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Exclusive: Ex-AAP Member Sunil Lal asks RMF to revoke 2006 Magsaysay Award for Kejriwal, Here is Why!

Established in 1957, the Ramon Magsaysay Award is Asia's highest honor and is widely regarded as the region's equivalent of the Nobel Prize

Mr. Arvind Kejriwal (extreme right) with the RMF Award in 2006. Image source:

Ex-Aam Admi Party (AAP) member and an activist for Jan LokPal Movement, Sunil Lal wrote a letter to the Ramon Magsaysay Foundation (RMF) in Philippines, out of utter resentment and disappointment to revoke Magsaysay Award for Mr Kejriwal. In an exclusive Interview with sub-editor Deepannita Das of the NewsGram Team, Sunil opens his heart out on politics, leadership and the corruption surrounding the AAP party and what provoked him to write a six-page letter to the board of trustees  of RMF against Mr Kejriwal-

  • You were a former member of AAP and an Activist of Jan LokPal Movement. Is there any particular reason that you are not associated anymore with the AAP party?

Sunil Lal:AAP was founded on certain parameters that aimed to change the face of ongoing politics in the state in a positive manner. Back then, Kejriwal was head of Parivartan citizen’s movement in Delhi and was selected for Ramon Magsaysay Award for his dedication and contribution to India’s right-to-information (RTI) movement as well as empowering the common citizens of the nation to counter and fight corruption.

However, he is acting totally against all what he stood for at the time when he was considered for this prestigious Award. That is when I decided to quit the party. I feel it is a grave error of judgment by which a wrong man was selected for the Magsaysay Award.

  • In your letter, you have cited news reports, which state that there was fault with Kejriwal. Did you face the obstacles while being associated with the party or the change came afterwards?

Lal: By creating AAP, I feel that Mr Kejriwal has divided the volunteers of Jan LokPal Movement into two. The notion that Arvind Kejriwal ran a transparent and clean government was exposed, when Anil Galgali, an RTI activist filed an RTI seeking details from the Information and Broadcasting Ministry of the Delhi government, regarding the expenses incurred on the government advertisement. Instead of sharing the details, the Delhi government replied that the information was not available as it has not been compiled and asked the information seeker to personally visit their office and check the files for themselves.

Sunil Lal with Anna Hazare. Photo courtesy: Datta Awari
Sunil Lal with Anna Hazare. Photo courtesy: Datta Awari
  • To narrow it down, did the RTI Activists make queries about the AAP Government’s advertising expenses in particular or did it get rejected in a similar and indirect manner?

Lal: On completion of one year, Government of Delhi published Ads in all media platforms- in print as well as in electronic media, to mark their achievements. So, news papers, online portals as well as TV channels were flooded with ads and out of sheer curiosity, Mr Shailendra Pratap Singh filed an RTI asking the funding details of AAP’s extravagant ads in particular.

  • Can you just specify the type of questions asked to the AAP Government in Delhi, which they failed to reply to?

Lal: There were five questions in total that was asked by Mr Shailendra Pratap Singh while he filed RTI-

  • How many mediums were used to spread AAP government’s work in Delhi? Please provide name of agencies/companies of the categories- Lists of Newspapers, TV channels, Radio/FM channels, Other modes if any
  • In how many states did the Delhi govt. gave their achievement ads after the completion of 1 year? Please provide a list.
  • What was the total amount spent by Delhi government on these ads
  • For how many consecutive days the ads were given to above mentioned mediums?
  • Did Delhi government give contract to any agency to carry out these advertisements, please provide the name & details of the agency name?

To the surprise and shock, none was answered by the AAP Government in Delhi. Rather it  came up with a very vague reason for not sharing the details.

Sunil Lal with Dr Kiran Bedi and with the Faculty & the Directors of Nirma University as a Volunteer heading the for the Anna's Janlokpal Movement. Image source:
Sunil Lal with Dr Kiran Bedi and with the Faculty & the Directors of Nirma University as a Volunteer heading the for the Anna’s Janlokpal Movement.
  • There were debates regarding tax department of Kejriwal’s Government. Do you want to share your thoughts regarding this?

Lal: Before joining the AAP party, Kejriwal was a tax officer himself who felt accountable against the existing corruption in the society and pledged to change that and vowed to fight the corruption in the tax department during his period in service.

But soon after, it was seen that his VAT Department was charged with corruption and was caught red handed for accepting bribe. Instead of fixing the problem, he was mum about it, when could set up a commission of experts to handle the issue of corruption in his department.

Sunil Lal, former AAP member and Team Leader at India Against Corruption
Sunil Lal, former AAP member and Team Leader at India Against Corruption

Talking further, Sunil feels that the (self proclaimed) Champion of anti-corruption, Mr Kejriwal has failed to keep his promise towards his people. The idea of a clean system, fair judgement and corruption free state was just an illusion for people who believed in him.

“Established in 1957, the Ramon Magsaysay Award is Asia’s highest honor and is widely regarded as the region’s equivalent of the Nobel Prize. It celebrates the memory and leadership example of the third Philippine president after whom the award is named, and is given every year to individuals or organizations in Asia who manifest the same selfless service and transformative influence that ruled the life of the late and beloved Filipino leader.”

In the letter written to RMF to revoke Magsaysay Award given to Kejriwal in 2006, Sunil says, “I am afraid, one of the recipients of your reputed Award is proving your choice to be wrong as today he is acting totally against all what he stood for at the time he was considered to be qualified for the Award.”

 –by Deepannita Das, sub-editor at NewsGram. The author can be reached at



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  • AJ Krish

    Such claims against Mr Kejriwal raise serious doubts on the credibility of the party and what it stands for.If these accusations are true, the public has been fooled yet again into believing that their desire for a corruption-free was possible.

Next Story

Kejriwal exposed as a liar: BJP leader

He also accused Kejriwal of hatching a conspiracy to mislead people by playing the emotional card of apology

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, VOA
  • Arvind Kejriwal apologised to Bikram Singh Majithia
  • BJP leader says that this apology established himself
  • BJP also alleged that Kejriwal did nothing while state aced so many problems

A day after Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal apologised to former Punjab Minister Bikram Singh Majithia for alleging that he was involved in the drug trade, the BJP Delhi unit on Friday said he has exposed himself as a “liar”.

The BJP also alleged that he was doing nothing even while the people of the national capital were facing a number of issues due to sealing.

Arvind Kejriwal apologized to Bikram Singh Majithia. IANS

Addressing a press conference here, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Delhi unit President Manoj Tiwari said: ” What we have been saying for long has been proved today. He is a liar. He has apologised to Majithia for making false allegations against him.”

“He is on his way to apologise to (Union Finance Minister) Arun Jaitley ji and (Union Transport Minister) Nitin Gadkari ji for making false allegations,” the BJP leader said. Kejriwal is facing defamation cases in court for levelling allegations against Jaitley and Gadkari.

Also Read: BJP Protests Outside Sisodia’s Residence, Demands Kejriwal’s Resignation

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief on Thursday apologised to the Shiromani Akali Dal leader in Punjab for making allegations of involvement in the drug trade, following which the latter said that he will withdraw a defamation suit filed in an Amristar court.

Tiwari, who represents the northeast Delhi constituency in the Lok Sabha, accused Kejriwal of misleading the people over the ongoing sealing drive in the national capital.

BJP MLA Vijender Gupta accused the AAP chief of only rendering “lip service” on the sealing drive and urged the Chief Minister to hold an all-party meeting with the Supreme Court-appointed Monitoring committee overseeing the drive.

“Since December last, Kejriwal is only doing lip service on the issue of sealing drive. He has done nothing to stop it,” Gupta, the Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Assembly, said.

He said that though Lt Governor Anil Baijal cleared the file for notifying 351 roads in the capital on February 8, the matter is still pending. “Why hasn’t he (Kejriwal) notified the 351 roads in the last 45 days?” Gupta asked.

BJP leaders are calling this apology a gimmick.

He also accused Kejriwal of hatching a conspiracy to mislead people by playing the emotional card of apology. Gupta warned the Monitoring Committee members not to act outside the law and said: “If the monitoring committee acts against law, then the BJP will oppose it.”

“We are going to inform the three municipal corporations of Delhi not to follow the commands of the Monitoring Committee if it goes against the law,” he said. “The MCDs should approach the court and also make Kejriwal a party,” the BJP leader added. IANS