The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) will release its manifesto for the Delhi assembly elections on Saturday. The party’s chief ministerial candidate Arvind Kejriwal will put out a 70-point blueprint that the AAP believes has the potential to turn Delhi into a global city.
The AAP’s manifesto comes at a time when the BJP has decided to come up with a ‘vision document’ instead of releasing a proper manifesto. For this election, the AAP had repackaged its trademark ‘mohalla sabhas’ into Delhi Dialogue, moving from crowd-sourcing constituency-wise manifestos to drawing up a broader vision for the whole of Delhi.
“Our manifesto is a concrete, actionable plan, a culmination of our Delhi Dialogue series that started in November on all key issues. In the document we will also explain how we are going to keep the promises if voted to power,” senior AAP leader Ashish Khetan told HT.
Some of the promises made though the Delhi Dialogues, include 8 lakh new jobs, 30,000 beds in hospitals, 20 new colleges, education loans to all needy students, CCTVs and WiFi in public areas, slashing electricity bills by half and free lifeline water.
“At each Delhi Dialogue, we spelt out our vision for the city. We’re also committed to Jan Lokpal and full statehood to Delhi. Issues such as health and education are on our agenda,” Khetan said.
The party claims to have interacted with professionals, housewives, students, youth, women, people from villages, industrialists, people from JJ clusters and from unauthorised colonies to identify issues and in turn come up with solutions.
AAP is also attacking BJP for tactically retreating, and going for ‘empty talk’ and ‘clip phrases’ in what it the party claimed will be a vision document. “BJP has neither the time nor the vision to match up to AAP’s blueprint,” AAP’s chief spokesperson Yogendra Yadav said on Thursday.
BJP president Amit Shah, however, said there was no difference between a vision document and a manifesto. “These are two different terms but they mean the same”.
AAP is also hitting out at Congress for promising cheaper power in its manifesto. “Congress says it will bring down electricity tariffs. It is a confession that the party betrayed the people of Delhi during its 15-year rule. It now clear that the agenda set by AAP has rattled all political parties,” said another AAP leader.
“BJP is also being forced to talk about the electricity tariffs now. In newspaper advertisements they are promising reduction in electricity tariffs by 50%. What prevented them from doing so when its Central government presented the Delhi budget in the Parliament last year?”