Working on the ambition of national expansion, the Aam Aadmi Party has found a new ally in Kerala – the Twenty20 party, the CSR branch of the Garments head KITEX Group. The two parties have announced a new political front, the People’s Welfare Alliance (PWA).
The announcement was made jointly by AAP convener and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Twenty20 chief coordinator Sabu M Jacob at a public conference in Kizhakkambalam, KITEX MDO, near Kochi.
The AAP is looking to step into a state where the BJP has minimal influence, with Jacob launching a scathing attack on Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Sunday, making it clear that he is trying to position his party as a rival to the CPM.
There will now be four political alliances in Kerala – the LDF (Left Democratic Fund), the UDF (United Democratic Fund). [Kerala]NDA (National Democratic Alliance), and Kejriwal’s People’s Welfare Alliance.
Jacob’s relations with the Kerala government have not been smooth since PV Srinivasan won the last assembly elections from Kunnathunad, which the Twenty20 claimed as his base.
Last year, Jacob said his conscience did not allow him to “invest a penny” in his own state. The company drew an investment of Rs 3,500 crore, which it had planned to set up a textile park in Kerala in 2020, and announced plans to invest Rs 1,000 crore in Telangana.
Conflicts between the corporate and state governments began after multiple inspections by Kitex’s manufacturing unit and premises by the Kerala Department of Labor and Health. Jacob’s entry into politics has been linked to conflict with the government.
Twenty20 parties are ruling four gram panchayats in Ernakulam district. The AAP, on the other hand, contested a few seats in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections in Kerala but has yet to make a mark.