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Arvind Kejriwal wins House trust,Congress says could back him for full term

BJP opposed confidence motion and accused Kejriwal of compromising with 'corrupt' Congress.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: January 3, 2014 9:45:27 pm

The six-day-old Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government on Thursday won the vote of confidence in the Delhi Assembly with outside support from seven Congress MLAs,a JD(U) and an independent lawmaker. 

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal won the trust vote 37 to 32 in the 70-member house. The BJP-SAD voted against. Congress MLA Mateen Ahmed is pro-tem speaker. 

After the motion of confidence was carried,Kejriwal said,“This is a victory for the people of Delhi.” 

Urban Development Minister Manish Sisodia moved the motion,which was debated for almost four hours in the House. Sisodia urged members to rise above political affiliations and support the government in the interest of a new kind of governance in Delhi.

BJP legislature party leader Harsh Vardhan attacked the AAP for forming the government with the Congress,the party Kejriwal has repeatedly accused of being deeply corrupt.

Delhi Congress chief Arvinder Singh Lovely assured Kejriwal of his party’s support,but called for caution while implementing the government’s policies.

JD(U) MLA Shoaib Iqbal was among those who spoke.

The Delhi elections produced a hung house with the BJP-SAD winning 32 seats,AAP 28,Congress eight,and a seat each for JD(U) and an independent. 

The chief minister appealed to all parties to support him on issues that he has raised in the Assembly. In letters written to the BJP and Congress,Kejriwal has laid down an 18-point agenda,which includes a Jan Lokpal Bill and full statehood for Delhi. 

“You (politicians) underestimated the power of the common man and that is why the common man had to teach you a lesson by entering politics. That challenge you all stacked against the common man was your biggest mistake,” Kejriwal said.

He added that politicans would make fun of him and the AAP,but the “truth” had prevailed in the end. 

The CM played on populist sentiments while evading questions that BJP legislators posed to him on his policies. He said that the status of water,electricity and many basic amenities in Delhi was bad because of criminalisation of politics.

Speaking immediately after Sisodia moved the motion,Vardhan said,“Manish Sisodia talked about moral duty to form the government. People did not vote for you to seek support from the Congress,a party you have repeatedly criticised for corruption.”

Vardhan said the people had voted the Congress out of power but brought the AAP into power through the “back channel”. “You have thrown proof against the corrupt into the dustbin of history. Yours is a government of alliance,and that too with the most corrupt party,” Vardhan said.

But minutes after Vardhan’s speech that lasted close to 45 minutes,Lovely said his party could continue to back the AAP for even five years. “Kejriwal ji,you keep making statements frequently that your government could fall in 48 hours. But I assure you today that as long as you keep taking decisions in the interest of the people of Delhi,there is no threat to your government,” Lovely said.

Addressing a press conference after winning the trust vote,Kejriwal vowed to combat corruption and sought help from the citizens of Delhi. “This is something that seven ministers or even 70 MLAs can’t achieve by themselves. Every citizen must come together to root out this evil,” Kejriwal said.

He added that his government would probe charges of corruption against the Delhi government or the municipal corporations.

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