Press Release
Yogendra Yadav, National President, Swaraj India, launches #iCan19 in West Bengal – Indian Citizens’ Action for Nation, 2019, a unique & innovative initiative for citizens to intervene in electoral politics; writes an open letter to citizens of West Bengal calling them to join the initiative and say, “I Can!”

Yogendra Yadav, National President, Swaraj India, launches #iCan19 in West Bengal – Indian Citizens’ Action for Nation, 2019, a unique & innovative initiative for citizens to intervene in electoral politics; writes an open letter to citizens of West Bengal calling them to join the initiative and say, “I Can!”

Press Note

Swaraj India 

Date: 20/01/2019

– Yogendra Yadav, National President, Swaraj India, launches #iCan19 in West Bengal – Indian Citizens’ Action for Nation, 2019, a unique & innovative initiative for citizens to intervene in electoral politics; writes an open letter to citizens of West Bengal calling them to join the initiative and say, “I Can!”

– Yogendra Yadav gives the slogan, “Neither Hindu Nor Musalman, Only Kisan-Naujawan”; says some do politics in the name of service, we do service in the name of politics

– Avik Saha, National General Secretary, Swaraj India says #iCAN19 to tap the positive energies of youth waging Yuva-HallaBol against unemployment in the country; also says Farmers have set the country’s agenda through the recent Kisan Mukti March and for the first time elections will be fought on the issue of farmers

– Akhilendra Pratap Singh, Presidium Member, Swaraj India says #iCAN19 is a historic initiative for citizens to make political intervention and will make the common person an important political force and not just a voter

– Prof. Sanjeeb Mukherjee, State President, Swaraj India says West Bengal needs new politics which parties practising alternative politics, like Swaraj India, can usher in

West Bengal, Kolkata, 20th January 2019| Yogendra Yadav, National President of the newly formed political party Swaraj India, today launched the public campaign Indian Citizens Action for Nation, 2019 [#iCan19] in West Bengal. In a letter to the citizens, Yogendra Yadav has appealed to them to join #iCan19 campaign and make political intervention in the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections.

In the letter, Yogendra writes that from the experiences in his various nationwide Yatras undertaken in the last 6 years, he clearly understood that there is infinite positive energy in the common people of the country, the country is ready to move forward, citizens are ready to contribute, but the country’s captains are not ready to take on responsibility.

While proposing #iCan19 to citizens, Yogendra Yadav said that “for the last six years I have travelled to every corner of the country and met countless citizens. To try to change the country, I adopted many paths: engaged in struggles/agitations, created non-electoral organizations, even formed a political party and contested elections, saw all highs and lows. This search for India has given me a faith: there is unique energy in our country. There are millions of people willing to rise above their self-interest and do something constructive for the society, there are lakhs of dedicated volunteers who hold the interest of the nation and the world ahead of their caste and religion, there are thinkers pondering about future without worrying about the present. But today this energy is helpless, every person walking the path of truth feels lonely. Organizations of social reforms have become mere shops, political parties have become gangs, ideologies have become prisons of the mind. But there is no platform that can connect this energy, there is no ideology that can match up to their dreams.”

Yogendra Yadav said that this proposal may seem strange to some people, but #iCan19 is not a forum to support only Swaraj India candidates. He said, “I am the President of the Swaraj India Party myself. People think that the parties contest elections, seek votes for themselves and try to win as many seats as they can. But in Swaraj India, we have said from the very first day that we do not want to become just another party. We are here to do a new form of politics. People generally do politics in the name of serving nation; we shall serve the nation in the name of politics. We are introducing #iCan19 but we do not want to control it. This is not a platform to support Swaraj India’s candidates. Citizens, who respond to my appeal and join the #iCan19 campaign, will choose the country’s main issues and their solutions, forge nation-wide public opinion on these issues and then, in some selected seats, will campaign for candidates who will be carriers of these issues and solutions. If this election is fought on the issues of farmers and youth, then no matter who comes to power, the nation will move forward. But if the elections are fought by creating rift between Hindus and Muslims, then whoever wins, the nation will lose. And we will not let India lose.”

He said that the country’s politics is standing on a historic turning point today, the Ganga-Yamuni culture and the social fabric of India is under attack, institutions are being demolished and the real issues of the people are being dwarfed. That is why we will have to come forward so that the real issue and the real agenda can be brought to the center stage of politics. This is the purpose of the #iCan19 campaign, through which thousands of citizens of the country will meaningfully intervene in the upcoming elections. Stating that the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections are critical for our democracy and society, he said, “It is imperative today that we rise above party and personal interests and think and work in the larger interest of the country.”

#iCan19, in a sense, is like a National Election Duty for any Indian citizen through which one can help to choose a clean and good candidate to the parliament, and thus contribute meaningfully in giving a new direction to the nation’s politics. Candidates will be selected by an independent panel, which will include some familiar, neutral and unbiased people active in social life. Complete profile of all selected candidates will be shared with #iCan19’s volunteers. Taking into consideration the candidate’s requirements in the election, and the priority of volunteers, volunteers will be linked with the candidate.

Avik Saha, National General Secretary, Swaraj India said “after a historic demonstration of farmers unity, the country is now getting ready for a youth movement. There is a simmering anger among youth on the issue of unemployment and corruption in recruitment to government jobs. Nearly 65% of our population is in the dark about their future, rendering the youth with a sense of gross insecurity. The country could have been developed by imparting education, values and employment opportunities to India’s infinite youth energy, but on the contrary, more than 24 lakh jobs are lying vacant, employment opportunities are constantly being reduced and the government has no intention to even fill the vacant posts. The few jobs that are coming out nowadays, tend to be a victim of money and lobbying instead of hard work or merit. The leakage of recruitment exams question paper has become commonplace. Question papers of various competitive examinations like the SSC, UPSSSC, Gujarat Constable, UP Police, Bihar Police recruitment to Bihar SSC have been leaked in the last few months. Every recruitment test is a victim of some kind of corruption. Even when a criminal gets arrested as a result of students’ vigilance, the actual gangsters and big fish behind such scams go untouched and this anti-social business of playing with the future of country’s youth is constantly booming.”

He said, “Now the youth of the country will not tolerate the tyranny and injustice being done to them. In the coming months you will witness the strength and solidarity of the youth in the form of Yuva HallaBol. You will also see how the youngsters, who had once put Prime Minister Modi on throne, carry the strength to dethrone him too. The #iCan19 campaign will give platform to all such youth who want to make meaningful changes in the country through political intervention.”

He also said “the recent Kisan Mukti March has made it clear that the farmers of the country could put pressure not only on the government but also on the opposition parties through their unity and solidarity. For the first time, farmers are setting the agenda for the Lok Sabha elections. Not only that, a major success of the Kisan movement this time was that the gap between the urban middle class and the rural farmers was reduced and they came together in demanding debt waiver and full price for farmers harvest. Even though the government tried hard to fool the farmers through data misinterpretations and media management, the farmers of the country have now begun to see through all their tricks. In addition to the resolve to defeat this anti-farmer government, farmers have also begun to intimidate the opposition parties claiming to be farmers-friendly.” Stating that #iCan19 is an electoral platform for the farmers too, Avik Saha said, “by becoming a part of this campaign, our farmer brothers and sisters will not serve any party, they will serve the country; they will build their own future and not of a leader.”

Akhilendra Pratap Singh, Presidium Member, Swaraj India said #iCAN19 is a historic initiative for citizens to make political intervention and will make the common person an important political force and not just a voter. For too long the role of citizens in Indian democracy has been that of mute spectators; now time has come for everyone to take up the challenge of nation building through active citizenship.

Prof. Sanjeeb Mukherjee, State President, Swaraj India said West Bengal needs new politics and political culture which parties practising alternative politics, like Swaraj India, can usher in. Swaraj India will play a major role in the emerging political scenario of West Bengal and try to take the state forward through progress of people and not progress of political parties.

To Join #iCAN19, call on 9845177160 or log in to https://ican19.in/ to fill the form.

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