The AAP is on a roll. But as Arvind Kejriwal would know very well, the path ahead will be harder from now on. This is a track he chose consciously: to fight the system by joining it, and not as his mentor Anna Hazare prefers, to be outside the system. So far so good.
Politicians may not admit, but surely the Aam Aadmi Party’s performance has made them sit up. If it were any party other than the AAP in Delhi, we would have seen power-brokers jumping into the fray, leading to the all-too-familiar scenario of wheeling and dealing, and before long we would have had a government.
There may be a few reasons why the BJP is not staking claim to power. One, with the AAP-inspired vigil, it's difficult to woo allies to cobble the requisite number. Two, President's Rule will lead to a re-election in Delhi, probably along with the Lok Sabha election. BJP might well be hoping that the Modi wave will give it a greater momentum for a decisive mandate.
Kejriwal's hope is that the AAP will be able to repeat the performance at the national level. But the extrapolation may not be so easy as it sounds. The citizen-driven party will have to mobilize state and district-level participation in big numbers to counter the well-entrenched local influences of the established parties, not just the Congress and the BJP, but also the many regional parties. It may not be beyond Kejriwal and his highly motivated team. Their theme of 'clean politics' is one which has a pan-India resonance. If Kejriwal has his eyes on a big number in the Lok Sabha, then the work will have to start right away.
The Delhi election result is a milestone in India's story of democracy. The light at the end of the tunnel is now a shade brighter. Kejriwal and his team need to ensure that the light only burns brighter. Hopefully, we are seeing the beginning of a change. If the right people are elected, the right people will be in power, and there will surely be better governance.