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Fledging Indian party AAP wins trust vote
Publication Date : 03-01-2014
The Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader, Arvind Kejriwal, today won a crucial trust vote in the state legislature, demonstrating that he has the support of 38 of Delhi’s 70 legislators, a clear majority and can continue to govern the city-state.
“The people of Delhi have won today. AAP’s next most important agenda will be to pass the Janlokpal Bill for Delhi,” Kejriwal said after winning the trust vote.
AAP won the confidence motion, moved by the AAP leader and education minister, Manish Sisodia, with the support of eight legislators of the Congress, the lone Janata Dal (United) member Shoaib Iqbal and an Independent, Ramvir Singh Shoukeen.
The BJP's 31 law-makers and its ally, the Akali Dal, opposed the motion.
In his 25-minute speech to close the debate on his trust motion, Kejriwal said: “I have not stood up here to save a government... we want swaraaj, the people's rule, in Delhi.”
The chief minister stressed that his government will probe all corruption charges and would spare none of the corrupt.
Kejriwal made it clear that his intention was to work for the common people and the motion of confidence if passed favourably will help the ordinary citizen living in the national capital. “AAP believes that all people who need an honest system are common men no matter wherever they stay - Greater Kailash or Sangan Vihar. People who are dishonest either rich or poor are the special ones. I haven’t stood here to save the government or make a government. I never thought that I will form a political party and fight elections. I am just a common man with no standing. A common man in India wants his children to get good education, safety for his family and a good judiciary. Crores of rupees have been spent for development but where is the development and where is the money? A common man wants to know that. Sadly, politics has been corporatised in India today,” Kejriwal said.
Earlier, the leader of the Opposition, Harsh Vardhan, took on Kejriwal and the AAP government over taking support from the Congress. He rubbished the free water scheme as benefiting only a few and was also critical of the power subsidy. He dismissed Kejriwal's metro ride on the day he took oath as CM as a mere gimmick.
The leader of the Congress Legislature Party, Arvinder Singh Lovely, while assuring his party's support to AAP if it delivered on its manifesto promises, criticised the government on the issue of water and power.
The CM said: “Our fight is to end corruption and we are here today. Our fight looked impossible and victory was a distant dream. For us 28 in the Delhi Assembly, God in whatever form he is, is with us. Today’s question is who are the members who are with the Aam Aadmi."
Kejriwal wondered whether a common man's time is not as valuable as a minister’s. “I have waited at red signals and lost no time in the last five-six days. Why does a political leader need security? The day God decides that you should not get any more security, no amount of bodyguards will be able to save you,” declared the Chief Minister.
Kejriwal said while he agreed with the Leader of the Opposition Harsh Vardhan, that Delhi already has a Lokayukta, it was very weak and a stronger Ombudsman was needed.
On the criticism that only a small section of the city's population will be benefited by AAP's free water announcement, Kejriwal said: “In case of free water, if a section is benefited to start with what is the harm? Has a good thing not been done?”
The CM pitched for full statehood for Delhi. He said there should be an audit of the power distribution firms and everybody must sit together and fix the power tariff.
“We need to look into unauthorised colonies as these are devoid of basic facilities. These facilities should be given until a permanent solution
is found. Same stands for illegal shanties. The contractors are also a tormented lot as their PFs are cut but not deposited into their accounts. This must stop,” Kejriwal said.
On FDI in retail, he said the AAP opposes it. He pointed out that the BJP too opposes it. “Why does the government look upon the business community as thieves? Ninety-nine per cent of them are honest and are ready to pay tax.”