Manish Sisodia, AAP's Trusted Lieutenant And Troubleshooter
Manish Sisodia had dared the BJP to present its education model (File)
Delhi's Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia over the years has emerged as the closest confidante of the Aam Aadmi Party chief, Arvind Kejriwal. While many founder-leaders of the AAP, including Prashant Bhushan and Kumar Vishwas fell apart from Mr Kejriwal, Mr Sisodia has remained the trusted lieutenant. He is contesting the Delhi Assembly Election 2020 from Patparganj, a constituency in East Delhi, from where he is an MLA.
Manish Sisodia, a journalist-turned-social activist, was one of the most prominent faces of the Anna Hazare agitation in 2011. A year after Arvind Kejriwal announced the creation of the Aam Aadmi Party, Mr Sisodia won the election from Patparganj, defeating BJP's Nakul Bhardwaj by 11,478 votes. After the fall of the AAP-Congress's 49-day government in 2013, he helped organise and prepare the party for the 2015 Delhi Assembly election.
Manish Sisodia was among the key architects of the Aam Aadmi Party's unprecedented mandate in 2015. He had again won from Patparganj, this time with over 25,000 votes. He was sworn in as the Deputy Chief Minister in Arvind Kejriwal's cabinet and entrusted with the crucial education ministry.
School education has been the key focus area of the AAP government. Mr Sisodia and Mr Kejriwal credit themselves with improving the infrastructure of government-funded schools. They also say that they have improved the quality of education in government schools. The opposition BJP claims they have exaggerated their accomplishments.
In the run-up to the Delhi polls 2020, Mr Sisodia had dared the BJP to present its education model, saying 109 primary schools had been shut by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi, which is ruled by the BJP.
"If you like their (BJP) model of education, then vote for them. I want to ask BJP, what is your model of education?" he had said.
Mr Sisodia has defended the AAP tooth and nail when the party came under the opposition fire. He is one of the key anti-BJP voices in the party. He was at the forefront when the BJP attacked the Delhi government over stifling pollution last year. He is currently battling the BJP onslaught against Mr Kejriwal over the Shaheen Bagh anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protests.