In an exercise initiated over the past fortnight, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has set aside his weekends to meet legislators from the AAP to discuss micro-issues from their respective constituencies. Kejriwal has been meeting a batch of 10 legislators every Saturday, who bring to the chief minister matters that call for his immediate attention.
Senior party members said the exercise is expected to keep the MLAs on their toes, particularly with Kejriwal keeping an eye on legislators’ attendance in their respective constituencies.
“The meetings are to ensure that legislators have no complaints regarding access to the chief minister. This is also an endeavour in confidence-building in each of them. Irregular meetings, held on the basis of availability of time, have now been streamlined into regular scheduled interactions. Batches of 10 legislators meet the chief minister every Saturday and discuss issues that need attention in their constituency,” Dilip Pandey, the party’s Delhi convenor, told The Indian Express.
“These meetings have been held over the past two weeks and they will continue to be held regularly henceforth,” he said.
Eight months into their second stint in Delhi, the AAP is formalising its feedback system and a similar exercise is being held at the party level.
“I have also been meeting batches of MLAs on scheduled days for feedback. Our priority right now is to ensure that our constituents’ grievances are resolved and their work is expedited at the earliest. The party wants to ensure that the legislators, who are the conduit between the party and the people, are easily accessible and visible in their constituencies. The initiatives being rolled out by the government have to reach the people and the MLAs have to ensure that,” Pandey added.
With the meetings lined up ahead, AAP MLAs have already started jotting down notes on the issues that need to be brought to the attention of the chief minister.
“The issues that we take to the CM do not necessarily have to be of grave importance but it could be something that needs immediate attention. If we have some work that has to be quickly expedited, we could take that to him during the Saturday meeting. The MLAs could also go to him with political feedback from their constituencies and bring to his notice minor things that will help strengthen the party. Though I am yet to meet him, when I do so, I hope to go with useful feedback from my constituency,” said Dwarka MLA Adarsh Shastri.
Kasturba Nagar MLA and parliamentary secretary, vigilance, Madan Lal warned that MLAs with “poor attendance” may have to face the chief minister’s disapproval.
“The chief minister has on several occasions insisted that legislators should be visible in their constituencies and while these meetings would be held to discuss routine micro-issues from constituencies, those MLAs who have poor attendance in their constituency must watch out for the CM’s chiding,” he said.