How ‘Talk to AK’ campaign of Arvind Kejriwal brought trouble for deputy Manish Sisodia
The ‘Talk to AK’ programme landed into trouble soon after its launch in July last year. The AAP had come under fire for using public funds to push its election campaign in Punjab and Goa.delhi Updated: Jun 16, 2017 13:33 IST
The CBI on Friday visited the house of Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia “seeking clarification on issues relating to an ongoing Enquiry” in the ‘Talk to AK’ programme.Here is why CBI is probing Sisodia for the programme:
* The programme was launched on July 17 last year where chief minister Arvind Kejriwal held a live interactive session with people from across the country and took questions through social media, phone calls and text messages. A website www.talktoAK.com was launched to live stream the interaction. Prior to the programme, the interaction was to be publicised through social media and conventional methods.
* The programme was launched, months ahead of the assembly polls in Goa and Punjab, as a counter Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Mann Ki Baat” programme. It was promoted as a two-way interaction as opposed to the PM’s one-way radio speech.
* The programme ran into trouble after its first edition. The opposition alleged that the ruling party was using public money to whet its election campaign in Goa and Punjab. The programme was criticised for taking on questions related to Goa and Punjab, instead of talking about the capital’s issues.
* The three-member Shunglu Committee, formed soon after the Delhi High Court stamped the L-G as the city’s administrator, also slammed the programme and pointed to irregularities in it. The “Talk to AK” programme was among the seven cases of alleged irregularities by the Arvind Kejriwal government referred to the CBI by former Delhi lieutenant governor Najeeb Jung.
* The complaint alleged that a public relations company was hired to promote the campaign and a proposal of Rs 1.5 crore was prepared for this. It alleged that the government went ahead with it despite objections from the principal secretary.
* Manish Sisodia head the department for information and publicity (DIP) which had conducted the programme.