Ajit Joy, a former IPS officer, seeking Aam Admi Party ticket to contest for the Lok Sabha from Thiruvananthapuram, was among the prospective candidates who appeared before a screening committee set up by the party, according to a local newspaper report.
Thiruvananthapuram is now represented by Union Minister of State Shashi Tharoor (Congress). Under the LDF seat sharing formula, this is a CPI constituency and former General Secretary A B Bardhan has said the party is considering fielding a non-party man. The BJP is said to be planning to renominate former Union Minister of State O Rajagopal, who was among the unsuccessful candidates in the 2009 election.
After graduating in Law from Kerala University, Ajit Joy took the civil service examination and joined the Indian Police service in 1992. He was in the Bihar cadre. While serving as Superintendent of Police, he took leave and studied for LLM at the Harvard Law School in the US. Overruling the Bihar government’s objections, the Election Commission had ordered him to be posted as SP at Chapra when Lalu Prasad Yadav sought election from there. In 2004, he took leave to set up practice as Supreme Court lawyer.
Later, he resigned from the service without waiting to complete 20 years of service and qualify for retirement benefits.
In 2005 Ajit Joy joined the UN Office on Drugs and Crime Regional Office for South Asia (UNODC ROSA) as Project Coordinator, Human Trafficking.
When Mahendra Singh, a three-time CPI (ML) MLA from Bagodar, was killed by hired assassins, Ajit Joy wrote an article paying a personal tribute to him, describing him in these words: “For the police, a nightmare; for the establishment, a terror; but for the people, a messiah”. He said, as SP of Giridih, he had shared a love-hate relation with him. He added, “In a land where most MLAs were corrupt, he was known to be a man of integrity. I respected him for that. However, for revolutionaries like him, opposing the entrenched interests and arrogance of the state was a mission. The police, the most visible agency of government, often became the target of his struggles. He was certainly a pain in the side for us. Which SP would like to see a national highway that connects Delhi and Kolkata blocked or his police station picketed? Singh was sure to do all this, to correct some wrong, highlight some injustice. No assembly session passed by without some uncomfortable questions from him on the police.”
On his return to Kerala, after eight years with the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Ajit Joy, 45, began quietly involving himself in activities dear to him. With a friend, Riju Stephen, a US-returned geologist, he undertook a ten-day 130-kilometre trek along the Pampa, to study the condition of the polluted river and assess the progress of the efforts to save it. A newspaper report quoted him as saying later, “A good sewage treatment plant has still not been commissioned at Sabarimala, which sees an inflow of pilgrims equivalent to the entire population of Kerala.” His copiously illustrated account of the Pampa walk can be seen at WalkforPampa.
On return from the Pampa walk, Joy writes, “Riju Stephen and I joined a new kind of revolution sweeping the country today. The revolution of the Aam Admi Party. This is the revolution that guarantees respect for humans, for environment, for justice, for dignity of the common man and a clean and decent society.”
“Be original” was the advice he gave students while an IPS officer. After Lalu Prasad was convicted and hailed in a fodder scam case, he wrote, “The real icing will only come when the loss to the state, that is the Rs 37.7 crores in question, is realized from the convicted….The corrupt should not under any cost enjoy the fruits of their corruption.”