India

India's anti-corruption party names poll candidates

  • 17 February 2014
  • From the section India
A supporter of Delhi"s Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, chief of the Aam Aadmi (Common Man) Party (AAP), holds a broom, the party symbol, at the party headquarters in New Delhi February 14, 2014
The Aam Aadmi Party made a spectacular debut in recent Delhi elections

India's new anti-corruption party has said it will fight the forthcoming general elections just days after its leader quit as Delhi chief minister.

The Aam Aadmi (Common Man) Party leader, Arvind Kejriwal, resigned on Friday after an anti-corruption bill was blocked in the state assembly.

On Sunday, the AAP named 20 candidates who would challenge senior politicians from the two main parties.

The party made a spectacular debut in recent Delhi elections.

"This is our first list of 20 clean candidates and we will be putting out more lists to contest from different parts of the country in the days ahead," news agency AFP quoted senior AAP leader Manish Sisodia as saying.

The candidates include activists and professionals who have left their jobs in recent months to join the new party.

Mr Kejriwal, who spent 49 days in power, had been threatening to resign if the anti-corruption bill was blocked.

On Friday night, he said his "cabinet has decided that we are quitting".

Addressing hundreds of supporters outside his party headquarters, Mr Kejriwal said his attempt to fight corruption by bringing in new legislation had been blocked by India's two leading parties, the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

Opposition politicians blocked the bill, which would have created an independent body with the power to investigate politicians and civil servants suspected of corruption.

They argued it was unconstitutional to introduce legislation that did not have the approval of the federal government.

But correspondents say his refusal to seek prior approval for the bill is part of a power struggle unfolding between his local administration and the federal government.

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