Bracing for the possibility of bypolls in 20 seats, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Sunday issued a list of promises to be fulfilled in the next two years — ranging from sanitation to water. He also hit out at the opposition for creating ‘obstacles’ in governance and the Centre for ‘conspiring’ against them. “We will finish the work we started,” he said.
Kejriwal was speaking at the inauguration of sewer connections in northwest Delhi’s Najafgarh, one of the 20 Assembly constituencies where bypolls could be held — following the President’s nod to the Election Commission’s recommendation to disqualify 20 AAP MLAs over the office of profit row.
The seat, held by Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot, is a concern for the party as it had won it by a margin of 1,200 votes. Apart from Najafgarh, sources said the party is also concerned about Mundka, Mehrauli and Rohtas Nagar.
Listing the party’s achievements since coming to power in 2015 — free water, no hike in electricity rates and mohalla clinics — Kejriwal said, “Sewer lines in 12 colonies will be laid in the next two years; I will make sure it gets done. Else you know how government work takes place — a coconut is cracked during inauguration, then another before polls.”
He also spoke about the disqualification of the MLAs and the “larger efforts” to derail governance. “I feel that there should be no politics in matters of welfare of the people. If you want to do politics, do it before elections. When a party wins, it is the duty of every party to work for the people and the country. Politics in matters of welfare is treason.”
On Saturday, Deputy CM Manish Sisodia had said that the disqualifications are an attempt to stop the government from functioning in its fourth year and to prevent them from preparing for the 2019 polls. Kejriwal also alleged that the disqualification of the MLAs was a last effort by the BJP after it failed to prove corruption against the government and its leaders.
“They raided me too… They found four mufflers, nothing else. Our MLAs were arrested, our files were called… for two years, 400 files were scanned by the L-G… Ultimately, when they couldn’t find anything, they disqualified 20 of our MLAs,” he said.
Advocate who brought up the issue of office of profit asks for security
Prashant Patel — the 31-year-old advocate whose petition first brought up the issue of office of profit — termed the Presidential nod to the disqualification of 20 AAP MLAs a “victory of the Indian Constitution and the people of Bharat”.
Patel also asked the Delhi Police and the Home Ministry to provide him security. “I request @DelhiPolice & @HMOIndia to provide me security urgent,” he wrote on Twitter.