A month in office, AAP govt draws flak for 'anarchy'
Nearly a month ago, on December 28, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal had taken oath at Ramlila Maidan. A month later, the party has fulfilled some of the promises made in its election manifesto but many remain unfulfilled.Updated: Jan 28, 2014 13:45 IST
Nearly a month ago, on December 28, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal had taken oath at Ramlila Maidan. A month later, the party has fulfilled some of the promises made in its election manifesto but many remain unfulfilled.
The new government on Day 1 had enforced a Supreme Court order by banning the use of red and blue beacons on government vehicles to put an end to VIP culture. It had announced free water up to 20,000 litres per month to those having metered connections, launched an anti-corruption and nursery admission helpline and ordered a CAG audit of the power distribution companies apart from slashing power bills by 50% for those consuming up to 400 units.
On the flipside, the government has also drawn flak for "populist anarchy, vigilantism, racial remarks and attacks on the media". It has also faced open rebellion from one of its own MLAs, Vinod Kumar Binny, and had to ultimately expel him.
While the government has made various announcements to keep its election promises, a lot remains to be done to ensure the benefits reach the intended beneficiaries. The government has announced free supply of up to 20,000 litres of water to each household but the move will benefit only those with functional water meters. There are a large number of houses without such meters. Moreover, water pipelines are yet to be laid in a vast area of Delhi.
Even as the government is all set to hold a special assembly session to pass the Jan Lokpal bill, the road ahead does not seem smooth. The real challenge will be to pass the Jan Lokpal Bill as it will also require the Centre's nod.
While Kejriwal had said that corruption cases have come down by almost 30 per cent after the launch of the anti-corruption helpline, the officials are de-motivated after the chief minister demanded a number of officers be transferred out of the unit.
The AAP government which had promised to make all contractual staff permanent is still facing protests from workers who have been sitting on a protest outside the Delhi Secretariat for more than a fortnight.
Kejriwal has also said that the draft of the Swaraj Bill, which aims at decentralisation of power, will be ready in two weeks but its passage is also likely to face resistance. The proposed law will transfer the power to decide on how funds for local issues such as roads and streetlights will be spent from MLAs to Mohalla Sabhas to be formed in each of the 272 municipal wards in Delhi.
Delhi law minister Somnath Bharti was involved in a major controversy when he led a mob in south Delhi's Khirki Extension, ordering police officers to conduct a raid without a warrant against alleged sex and drug racket involving African nationals. The Opposition and women activists demanded his resignation over his vigilantism and alleged racial slurs.
However, on Monday reacting to the controversies, Kejriwal said: "We're not here to save the government. No previous government has done as much as we have in the last 30 years."
First Published: Jan 28, 2014 13:39 IST