Kejriwal’s Political Jour….

Kejriwal's Political Jour….

Pankajnath Tiwari :-
Arvind Kejriwal is an Indian politician and the current Chief Minister of Delhi. He is the leader of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), a political party founded in 2012 with the aim of combating corruption and promoting good governance.

Kejriwal was born on August 16, 1968, in Siwani, Haryana, India. He graduated from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur with a degree in mechanical engineering in 1989. After completing his education, Kejriwal joined the Indian Revenue Service (IRS) as an assistant commissioner of income tax.

In 2000, Arvind Kejriwal took a sabbatical from his government job and established an NGO called Parivartan, which focused on social activism and fighting corruption at the grassroots level. Kejriwal gained prominence for his efforts in bringing transparency and accountability to government procedures, particularly through the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

In 2011, Kejriwal, along with social activist Anna Hazare, played a significant role in the anti-corruption movement known as the India Against Corruption (IAC) campaign. The campaign demanded the passage of a strong anti-corruption bill, the Jan Lokpal Bill. However, Kejriwal and some of his associates eventually parted ways with Hazare and decided to form a political party to continue their fight against corruption.

On November 26, 2012, Arvind Kejriwal formally launched the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) with the objective of providing an alternative to traditional political parties in India. The party’s primary focus was on issues such as corruption, good governance, and participatory democracy.

In 2013, Kejriwal and his party made a significant impact in the Delhi Legislative Assembly elections. The AAP won 28 out of 70 seats and formed a minority government with the support of the Indian National Congress (INC). Arvind Kejriwal became the Chief Minister of Delhi on December 28, 2013.

However, Kejriwal’s first stint as Chief Minister was short-lived. He resigned after just 49 days in office due to the failure to pass the Jan Lokpal Bill in the Delhi Assembly. The party decided to contest the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, but they did not achieve significant success at the national level.

In the 2015 Delhi Legislative Assembly elections, the Aam Aadmi Party staged a remarkable comeback. The party won 67 out of 70 seats, securing a massive majority. Arvind Kejriwal was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Delhi for the second time on February 14, 2015.

Since then, Kejriwal’s government has implemented several initiatives and policies in Delhi, including improvements in education, healthcare, electricity, water supply, and public transportation. The AAP government’s focus on providing subsidized electricity, free water supply, and quality education has gained attention both nationally and internationally.

Arvind Kejriwal and the Aam Aadmi Party have also expanded their political presence beyond Delhi. The party contested in various state elections, including Punjab, Goa, and Gujarat, but their success has been limited to a few seats in these states.

Delhi Jan Lokpal Bill: One of the major focuses of Arvind Kejriwal’s political career has been the Jan Lokpal Bill, an anti-corruption legislation. During his first tenure as Chief Minister of Delhi in 2013, Kejriwal introduced the Delhi Jan Lokpal Bill, which aimed to create an independent ombudsman to investigate corruption cases. However, the bill was not passed due to opposition from other political parties.

National and International Recognition: Arvind Kejriwal’s political journey has garnered attention both nationally and internationally. In 2014, he was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine. He has also received various awards and accolades for his work, including the Ramon Magsaysay Award in 2006 for his contribution to empowering citizens through social activism.

Electoral Challenges: While the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) achieved a resounding victory in the 2015 Delhi Legislative Assembly elections, they faced challenges in other state elections. In the 2017 Punjab Assembly elections, the party emerged as the main opposition but failed to form the government. Similarly, in the 2017 Goa Legislative Assembly elections, the AAP did not secure a significant number of seats.

Tussles with the Central Government: Arvind Kejriwal’s tenure as Chief Minister has been marked by frequent clashes with the central government, led by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). There have been ongoing disputes over issues such as control over the Delhi Police, administrative powers, and the appointment of bureaucrats. These conflicts have sometimes resulted in administrative challenges and legal battles between the Delhi government and the central government.

Re-election in 2020: In the 2020 Delhi Legislative Assembly elections, the Aam Aadmi Party, under the leadership of Arvind Kejriwal, secured a decisive victory, winning 62 out of 70 seats. The party campaigned on its achievements in education, healthcare, and public services, emphasizing the improvement of government schools and the provision of quality healthcare.

COVID-19 Response: The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 presented significant challenges, and Arvind Kejriwal’s government implemented several measures to tackle the crisis in Delhi. The government set up dedicated COVID-19 hospitals, increased testing capacity, provided financial aid to the affected families, and implemented lockdown measures to contain the spread of the virus.

Odd-Even Scheme: In an effort to combat air pollution in Delhi, Arvind Kejriwal’s government implemented the Odd-Even scheme in 2016. Under this scheme, private vehicles with odd-numbered license plates were allowed to ply on odd-numbered dates, while those with even-numbered plates were permitted on even-numbered dates. The scheme aimed to reduce vehicular pollution and congestion in the city.

Education Reforms: The Aam Aadmi Party government, led by Arvind Kejriwal, focused on improving the education sector in Delhi. They introduced initiatives such as the “Chunauti” program, which aimed to enhance the learning levels of students in government schools. The government also emphasized the training and development of teachers and invested in infrastructure improvements in schools.

Mohalla Clinics: Another significant initiative introduced by the Kejriwal government is the establishment of Mohalla Clinics. These are neighborhood health centers that provide free primary healthcare services, including consultations, medicines, and diagnostic tests, to residents of Delhi. The Mohalla Clinics have been lauded for increasing accessibility to healthcare, particularly for the economically disadvantaged sections of society.

Free Water and Electricity: Arvind Kejriwal’s government implemented measures to provide subsidized water and electricity to Delhi residents. The government introduced the concept of free water supply for households consuming up to a certain limit, and also provided electricity subsidies for consumers using less than a specified amount of power. These initiatives aimed to make essential utilities more affordable for the common people.

Anti-Corruption Efforts: Throughout his political career, Arvind Kejriwal has remained committed to fighting corruption. His government established a dedicated helpline, the Anti-Corruption Helpline, to receive complaints regarding corruption in public offices. The helpline enables citizens to report incidents of bribery, malpractice, or misconduct, with the aim of taking swift action against corrupt officials.

Expansion of the Aam Aadmi Party: While initially focused on Delhi, the Aam Aadmi Party under Kejriwal’s leadership has expanded its presence to other states in India. The party has contested in elections in states like Punjab, Goa, Gujarat, and Haryana, aiming to replicate its success at the national level. However, the party’s performance in these elections has varied, with limited success in some cases.

Political Activism and Anna Hazare’s Movement: Prior to forming the Aam Aadmi Party, Arvind Kejriwal was involved in various social and political activism endeavors. He played a prominent role in the anti-corruption movement led by social activist Anna Hazare in 2011. Kejriwal, along with Hazare, advocated for the enactment of a strong anti-corruption legislation, which eventually led to the formation of the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 at the national level.

Public Engagement and “Janta Samvad” Sessions: Arvind Kejriwal’s government in Delhi has prioritized public engagement and participatory governance. Kejriwal holds regular “Janta Samvad” (public interaction) sessions, where he directly interacts with citizens, listens to their grievances, and addresses their concerns. These sessions provide a platform for direct communication between the Chief Minister and the public, emphasizing transparency and accountability.

Women’s Safety Initiatives: Ensuring women’s safety has been a key focus for the Delhi government under Kejriwal’s leadership. The government launched initiatives such as the “Delhi Women’s Safety App” to provide a quick response system in emergency situations. They also introduced marshals on public buses to enhance safety and implemented CCTV camera installations across the city for increased surveillance.

Entrepreneurship and Startup Support: Arvind Kejriwal’s government has taken steps to promote entrepreneurship and support startups in Delhi. They introduced the “Startup Delhi” initiative, which provides various incentives and assistance to budding entrepreneurs. The government has also partnered with industry experts and established incubation centers to nurture and support startup ventures in the city.

Electric Vehicle Adoption: In line with promoting sustainable transportation, the Delhi government has initiated efforts to encourage the adoption of electric vehicles (EVs). They launched the “Switch Delhi” campaign to create awareness about the benefits of EVs and incentivize their purchase. The government has also offered subsidies and incentives for EV buyers and has been working on expanding the charging infrastructure across the city.

Water Conservation Measures: Recognizing the importance of water conservation, Arvind Kejriwal’s government has implemented measures to address water scarcity in Delhi. They have focused on rainwater harvesting initiatives, rejuvenation of water bodies, and reducing water leakage in the distribution system. Additionally, the government has introduced a “Jal Board Sewa” app to streamline water-related services and provide better access to water supply-related information.

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