Incidentally, the new CM had also announced – again, much in advance to taking oath of office – that all state government offices will display photographs of Shaheed Bhagat Singh and Dr BR Ambedkar instead of the CM as is the usual practice, but going by the politically-loaded choice of venue of the oath-taking ceremony as the martyr’s birthplace, which is obviously not the case, such a stance does not inspire confidence.
What does the AAP leadership really have in mind, considering that it has never had anything to do with the political philosophy of either individual?
It is obviously all about optics. Nothing more, nothing less.
Meanwhile, doubts are being expressed from day one about how much of the decision-making would actually be done by the “Super CM”, party supremo Arvind Kejriwal. It has been alleged that Bhagwant Mann is but a ‘rubber stamp’ for Kejriwal, and a photograph of the former genuflecting before the latter for his ‘blessings’ immediately after the election results were declared did nothing to dispel that notion.
What is of concern is that Kejriwal has come a long way from the days when he shared the stage with Anna Hazare espousing the cause of ‘India Against Corruption’, climbed up to an electric meter wielding a pair of pliers, drove around in a beat-up WagonR, slept on the road near the Central Secretariat as part of a protest and tweeted that “Modi is a coward and a psychopath” after his office was raided by the CBI in 2015.
Let alone walking his initial talk of eschewing the trappings of a high political office in this country, referred to in popular parlance as ‘VIP culture’, such as living in an imposing government bungalow and a cavalcade complete with gun-toting police guards, and providing an ‘alternate’ system of governance after being voted to power in Delhi, Kejriwal, say his detractors, has now turned into a seasoned politician helming a run of the mill political outfit which needs money to keep its wheels greased.
It is alleged that graft is rampant in the higher echelons of power in Delhi government, besides agencies controlled directly by the state government such as Revenue and Transport departments. Indeed, many of its MLAs have allegedly scripted rags-to-riches tales since they got elected as unknown faces with just the allocation of the party symbol to show as their achievements in life.
Meanwhile, roads under the PWD have craters like the Moon in many parts of the city even on key stretches, the flood control department remains comatose when the monsoon plays havoc, streetlights are absent even on arterial roads, the fleet of DTC buses remains sparse and key agencies like those to supervise the multi-crore illegal pet trade and rehabilitation centers have either not been constituted or remain completely ineffective.
The AAP boasts of having turned around schools run by the state government, but merely an improvement in physical infrastructure does not amount to imparting good education.
There are also allegations of the liquor mafia thriving under the present regime.