In ideologically discordant notes within Aam Aadmi Party, Captain Gopinath, pioneer of low-cost airline business, slammed the decision of AAP government in Delhi to reject FDI in retail, saying the party is "running in danger" of being branded like other parties of resorting to cheap and populist measures.
"The move would send a wrong message to investors that India was an unstable country with regard to economic policies", he told PTI and asked AAP, which he joined recently, to "step back and deliberate and not do anything in haste in terms of policy decisions."
Stating that AAP is unwittingly also playing into the hands "Indian oligopolies" who were opposing FDI in retail so that they could have a monopoly, he said "which means it is okay for Indian corporates to rape India and not foreign retail." "That's exactly what 'crony capitalism is," he added.
Gopinath said "I think personally opening up is good for the farmers and also the economy and the country. The view of small retailers is unfounded."
Explaining why he joined the Arvind Kejriwal-led outfit, he said AAP's DNA is inherited from Anna Hazare. "While Anna gave hope and aspirations, Kejriwal gave the ideology and the movement a platform to convert into political action."
"....they have completely given a new dimension to politics and shown that elections can be fought and won without money, muscle and caste backing. That is the biggest contribution to Indian politics."
He said the challenge would be how to scale this up nationally and ensure elected representatives of AAP down the line "do not succumb to arrogance, greed and abuse of power and go the way of all flesh."
Noting that AAP is still a young party, he said AAP must step back a little and come out with a long-term vision for India on economy, fiscal policy, defence and foreign affairs that will create a stable India which can remove poverty and improve living standards and create a happy society.
"The enemy of AAP is not from without- Congress or BJP, it is from within. Can it remain humble and be true to its ideology of being servants of the people and not masters once they come to power?" Gopinath said.