Congress on Saturday sought Delhi government’s explanation on reports that it was mulling purchasing high-end equipments for surveillance, as it expressed apprehension that the ruling AAP may use such a facility to snoop on its political opponents.
Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee President Ajay Maken said that he will write to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to elicit his view on a “leaked Cabinet note”, which he claimed that mentions about buying equipments for surveillance and spending large amount on it.
“A 16-page document has come to the public domain which carries government data and details of current infrastructure. This shows that it has leaked from government files, so we want Kejriwal to clarify exact status of this Cabinet note,” Maken said while addressing a press conference.
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Maken mentioned that the information mentioned in Cabinet note can only be drafted by a government employee. The document also mentions about “secret fund” which was Rs 1.50 lakh earlier and now being proposed to Rs 20 lakh, he said.
The Congress leader questioned intent of procuring high-tech surveillance equipments and alleged that AAP is a party which believes in surveillance as their own ministers tap phone or make sting.
“Will this infrastructure be used to nab corrupt officials or will it be used to settle their own political scores. Going by past record of AAP, we apprehend that such facility will be used to snoop on political opponents.
“There should be clear norms on appointment and head of Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB). Their selection should be made through transparent manner and should be neutral. It should be ensured that facility is not misused,” Maken said.
He also alleged that corruption has not gone down in the city and questioned the exact status of the anti-corruption helpline.
“We would also want to know the status of 1031 anti-corruption helpline number as a RTI reply mentions that ACB has received only 282 calls in 38 days and only seven FIRs have been registered against their claim of over 1.25 calls and action against several officials.
“We would want to know about amount spent on advertising anti-corruption helpline and if the money spent was justified,” he said.
“He (Kejriwal) claims that corruption has ended, but is it possible to end corruption with only 282 calls. We want the Chief Minister to clarify the status of ACB,” Maken said.
The Congress leader also claimed governance has paralysed as there was no development in the city.
Maken claimed that unscheduled power cuts have become frequent, old people are not getting pensions even municipal staffs are not getting their salary and officers are “highly demotivated”.
Maken alleged that AAP-government also wasted time in calling two-day long special Assembly session. “What was the need to call Assembly session when the matter was in the court? In the Assembly session, they should have discussed problems of Delhi but they discussed things which are out of their jurisdiction and matter which are pending in the court,” Maken said.
“We have time and again asked him to change his approach if he was to run the city. He is adopting politics of revolt due to which there is no section left against which he has objected. He started with Haryana government followed by Central government, Delhi Police, mayors of municipal corporation and media.
“He also acted against his party members and even bureaucrats of Delhi. Now, the situation is such that officers are hesitating to take decision on any file,” Maken said.