After their expulsion from the Aam Admi Party, Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan formally announced their own all-India political party- Swaraj India.
The party was initially an outfit for campaigning on “public issues and the Swaraj Abhiyan leaders, who announced the party’s name on Sunday, said Swaraj India would be the “only party to voluntarily bring itself under RTI Act.”
Earlier on July 31, they had announced that this would be an “alternative political vehicle” and said its name would be announced on October 2. More than 400 delegates from all over India participated in the founding convention of the party.
The mission statement as given out by the party is to usher in “probity, transparency and accountability in electoral politics”. Yadav was unanimously elected as the party’s first national president and Jha as its first national general secretary. Anand Kumar will be a mentor and advisor to Swaraj India.
A senior lawyer, Bhushan was elected the new national president of Swaraj Abhiyan, which would continue to work on “public issues”.
Bhushan and Yadav said the need for a party arose as “the founding values of our republic — democracy, diversity and dialogue – are under attack.”
In an apparent dig at AAP, Swaraj India said it had decided that “there will be freedom of expression within the party at all levels and dissent will be accorded respect and space.”
“At a time when political parties are afflicted by the malaise of personality cult and centralisation of power”, it said Swaraj India shall be governed “collective leadership” through an organisational “presidium” model as its highest decision-making body.