The Yogendra Yadav-led Swaraj Abhiyan has announced that it would set up teams in all the 272 wards of the national capital shortly. The organisation maintained that it was not contemplating contesting the municipal polls, but was poised to work as a check on the Arvind Kejriwal government and raise “people’s day-to-day issues”.
“The move is likely to be interpreted in several ways over the next year-and-a-half until the next municipal polls, but we are clear about our goal. We are true to the spirit of ‘swaraj’ and will not wait for any government to deliver but will work by ourselves. The teams in each ward will create a citizens’ force and work towards public grievances,” Yadav told The Indian Express.
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“The ward is the most natural and basic unit of governance and that is why we decided to start from there. An organisation that has any presence in Delhi should have some base in the wards. We will attempt to address day-to-day problems of the people and ensure facilitation,” he said.
Yadav said the ward-level units would strive to form teams between 10 and 50 volunteers, who will raise issues from their respective areas and persistently pursue them. “Notwithstanding the big claims made by the AAP government, many issues have gone unaddressed. The government is straying on its promises on Value Added Tax, electricity, dengue and sanitation in unauthorised colonies, among other things. Our teams will offer a systematic structure to address these grievances,” he said.
The Swaraj Abhiyan will start off with a 10-day intensive campaign on fighting dengue. “The disease has taken epidemic proportions but like previous governments this one is also avoiding it,” Yadav alleged.
The move to set up teams across wards was, however, dismissed by the AAP as a non-starter. Senior AAP leaders maintained that if there were serious existing grievances, the principal opposition party would have raised them by now.