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Anny Kohli

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Anny Kohli
Social worker from India
Anny Kohli with Arvind Kejriwal, 23 October 2012
Country India
Known for Social work, Feminist activism
Organisation India Against Corruption
Website IAC Mumbai official website

Anny Kohli, is from Mumbai and also known as "Annie" Kohli. She is the former aide of Arvind Kejriwal - President Aam Aadmi Party, who rallied volunteers of 'Anna Hazare's Jan Lokpal movement' in October of 2012 to protest Kejriwal's decision to convert Team Anna into a political party. Anny Kohli sternly protested Kejriwal's sloth in taking action on complaints of irregular land transactions by 'Mayank Gandhi', then Team Anna's Mumbai frontman, who had switched loyalties to Kejriwal.[1][2][3]

Later Kohli was appointed as in-charge of Team Anna's Mumbai operations by Anna Hazare on 18 November 2012, and she was retained after IAC Hq. regained control of the unauthorised India Against Corruption Jan Lokpal campaign created by impersonators of their movement.

Early life

Anny Kohli inviting Hindutva proponent Lal Krishna Advani to a 'HRA' function

Kohli is a former personnel of the Indian Territorial Army, an irregular Chindit unit, who claims to have been embedded with the Mukti Bahini during the Bangladesh War for Independence from Pakistan, upon an appeal from Indira Gandhi and on the recommendation of Hindustan Republican Army's revolutionary CPI(M) MP "Captain Lakshmi" - Lakshmi Sehgal - who wanted to staunch the flood of Bangladeshi refugees to India in 1971.[4][2]

In February 2006 Kohli co-organised a campaign in Mumbai for Hindu Janjagruti Samiti against the Indian artist M.F. Husain for alleged obscenity in Husain's painting of 'Bharat Mata'.[5]


Anny Kohli's protest march to PCRF office, Ghaziabad. The banners ask "Arvind why did you backstab Anna Hazare?"

Kohli's first protested on October 21, 2012,[6][7] but guerilla actions continued through November until the Aam Aadmi Party was formed on 26 November 2012. After Kohli's widely broadcast series of popular demonstrations against formation of a political party, volunteers of the anti-corruption movements got sharply polarized between political and non-political factions. By 10 November 2012 Hazare could then emerge to say that his team will remain a non-political entity and would also ask for usage of the India Against Corruption brand name and banner which Kejriwal was using.[8][9]

The Digvijaya Singh controversy

Soon after Kohli interrupted Kejriwal's conference, Digvijaya Singh, a General Secretary of Congress Party, tweeted "If Kejriwal can ask Kumar Vishwas to hold debate then I can be represented by Anny Kohli".[10]

This tweet triggered a cyber spat with AAP claiming Anny Kohli was a Congress Party mole to sideline their allegations on the Robert Vadra-DLF scam. However, Praful Vohra, another IAC member from Mumbai, confirmed Anny Kohli as a long time IAC volunteer who joined the movement to protest the Adarsh Society scandal and regularly attended IAC Mumbai's meetings. Vohra said Kohli's later efforts within IAC Mumbai unit to delink IAC from Kejriwal's Swaraj alienated her from Kejriwal's camp in the past year.[2][1]

Kejriwal, Anny Kohli bury their ‘differences’

On 23rd and 24th October, Kohli objected how some members of Kejriwal's campaign had manhandled her and were dubbing her "as an agent of political parties" and demanded Kejriwal "clarify his line of action". Kejriwal apologised to Kohli for hooliganism by his volunteers at Mumbai airport. Kohli said "I am not with him on the issue of politics, but when it comes to fight against corruption I am with him".[11][12]

Split in Team Anna

  • On 18 November 2012 Kohli was appointed as Team Anna's Mumbai in-charge by Anna Hazare.
  • On 28 October of 2012 Kohli created a blog for Hazare loyalists and declared "IAC struggle to continue" writing .. 'the People' will lose faith in IAC". She said IAC volunteers would continue their struggle minus "Kejriwal and Co" or "Core Committee", or even Hazare himself, with their slogan "I AM IAC" (India Against Corruption) : Anny Kohli[13]
  • On 30 October of 2012 Kohli opened the website WWW.IAMIAC.COM and composed a long essay, titled as "IAC Mumbai to expose Team Anna scamsters", terming the separation as the "IAC swindle", and objecting to Kejriwal's decision to return brand India Against Corruption to its "unknown" proprietors and not allow Anna's team to use it.[14]
  • On 17 December 2012 Kohli unilaterally despatched a legal notice against the India Against Corruption Hq., asking for the IAC brand name to be licenced to Hazare to continue the Jan Lokpal campaign.
  • On 28 December 2012 the "IAC HQ" organization instituted criminal complaints in Pune, Delhi and Hyderabad, under India's draconian cyber laws, targeting Anny Kohli and Hazare for hosting the pirate website 'WWW.IAMIAC.COM' and allegedly hacking IAC's mailing list.
  • By 13 January 2013 the opponents compromised the cyber case - Anna Hazare renounced all claims over IAC brand name, and Kohli's website was wound down.[15]
  • On 18 January 2013 and then 30 January 2013 Anna Hazare announced he would no longer work under IAC's "banner" but would work as "Jan Tantra Morcha", a brand owned by Santosh Bharatiya's Chauthi Duniya media combine.[16]
Anny Kohli, then of 'Jan Tantra Morcha' between IAC's founders Veeresh Malik-L and Sarbajit Roy-R, attending a sexual harassment inquiry
  • On 9 August 2013 Anna Hazare, after differences with Bharatiya, announced he is withdrawing from anti-corruption work.[17]
  • On 28 Nov 2013, IAC National Convenor Sarbajit Roy revealed in a private email that ex-IAC Kohli continued to be with Hazare's Jan Tantra Morcha and had organised a Gender Gap campaign since 2010 against alleged sexual harassment of IIM Ahmedabad female students and researchers[18] which IAC was taking over from Hazare w.e.f 3 November 2013.[19]
  • On 26 January 2014, IAC Hq. announced IAC retained Anny Kohli as its ad-interim honorary Mumbai in-charge.

External Links

IAC Mumbai official website


  1. The Newshour Debate: Sheila-Kejriwal 'power' war Part-1
  2. The Newshour Debate: Sheila-Kejriwal 'power' war Part-2
  3. Anny Kohli questions IAC's 'double standards' Parts-1,2


  1. 1.0 1.1 Firstpost, Staff. Drama as Kejriwal confronted by Anna supporters on camera, Firstpost news agency, 21 October 2012.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Krishnan, Murali. IAC's Anny Kohli protests Kejriwal's corruption, Indianews news agency, 21 October 2012.
  3. PTI, News. Former IAC member Annie Kohli confronts Arvind Kejriwal, drama at press meet, Economic Times, 21 October 2012.
  4. Raza, Danish. Who is Annie Kohli?, Firstpost news agency, 23 October 2012.
  5. Mute protests at Andheri against Husain
  6. Nanda, Rupashree. Anna aide Anny Kohli a part of conspiracy against me: Arvind Kejriwal, CNN-IBN, 21 October 2012.
  7. Kejriwal dares PM, Sonia to debate, ex-aide challenges him, IANS, 21 October 2012.
  8. Mukherjee, Ashish. Team Anna 2.0 announced, will tour country from January 30, NDTV, 10 November 2012.
  9. Jayaram, Rahul. Team Anna gets new people. But will their gameplan be a game-changer?, India Today, 15 November 2012.
  10. PTI, News. Former IAC activist Annie Kohli can represent me in debate: Digvijaya, Times of India, 22 October 2012.
  11. Arvind, Ayesha. Kejriwal, Anny Kohli bury their ‘differences’, Times of India, TNN, 24 October 2012.
  12. Headlines Today, Bureau. Anna aide Anny Kohli confronts Arvind Kejriwal again, accuses IAC members of mishandling her, Headlines Today, 23 October 2012.
  13. Kohli, Anny. IAC struggle to continue against corrupt Team Anna, IAC Mumbai, 28 October 2012.
  14. Kohli, Anny. IAC Mumbai to expose Team Anna scamsters, IAC Mumbai, 30 October 2012.
  15. Biswas, Partha Sarathi. Anna denounces Brand IAC, to scale up BVJA, Indian Express, 13 January 2013.
  16. Ghosh, Abantika. Anna drops IAC brand name, to close Delhi office, Indian Express, 18 January 2013.
  17. Krishnan, Murali. Anna retires from anti-corruption war, Indianews news agency, 9 August 2013.
  18. Central Information Commission, 27 November 2013, Ketan Pradyumna Bhatt versus IIM Ahmedabad
  19. Annie Kohli and RTI pressure in IIM Ahmedabad