Ashish Sood

Four-Years Of Kejriwal is About Wasting Mandate

The ever-in-conflict AAP government under the leadership of Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal completes four years in the office. As we look back at the governance of AAP in Delhi, you will find several scams and incidents of conflict between the chief minister and the LG of Delhi and differences among their own party people than any development and good work done. Application in governance was expected from a government by a party which was formed out of an anti-corruption movement for the revolutionary Lokpal Bill. But what a big let-down!

To start with, 17 people charred to death in a hotel in Karol Bagh area of Delhi and the ‘honest’ government of Delhi failed to fix the responsibility as to who had given NOC to the hotel. The government had always had confrontationist attitude. It was at war with former Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung, and its at war with his successor Pradeep Baijal.

Despite making false claims, it failed to do anything on education as no benefits was passed on to either parents or students. Controversy over ration card by Delhi MLA Sandeep Kumar, then beating incidence of chief secretary, fake degree issue by one of the minister of the party, Somnath Bharati, one of MLA beating up he wife, hunger strike at the residence of LG, workers of the Delhi government going on strike, odd-even formula failing to give desired results, all IAS officers going on leave protesting against the government, allegations of CBI raids, use of marshals against opposition leaders in the Assembly, can be counted as ‘achievements’ of the Kejriwal government.

Arun Jaitley

Falsehood Doesn’t Have Longevity

The past two months have witnessed several fake campaigns.  Each one of them has failed to cut much ice.  Falsehood doesn’t have longevity.  The ‘compulsive contrarians’ continued to jump from one falsehood to another.  The Rafale deal not only strengthens the combat ability of the Indian Air Force but saved thousands of crores for the exchequer. When its falsehood collapsed, a half document was produced to perpetuate the falsehood.  Little did the creators of this falsehood realise that the cost of producing half a document is loss of full credibility.

Those who organised loot on the banks between 2008-2014, started alleging that industrial loans had been waived.  Not a single rupee was waived.  On the contrary, the defaulters have been thrown out of management.  The falsehood that the Government and its Ministers were colluding to allow the economic offenders to escape was exposed when one after the other the investigative agencies were succeeding in bringing back many of the key defaulters and middlemen.

Ashish Sood

AAP’s No To Lokayukta An Act To Cover Up Corruption

There is a saying that five years is a very short time in politics. However, in the case of the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Delhi, five years has witnessed epochal changes. The party which was found on the foundations of a public movement for probity in public life and with a demand to appoint an ombudsman to political executive accountable, is today fighting pitched battle to thwart all moves for probity.

Initially Delhi Assembly Speaker Ram Niwas Goel had objected to this order that there is was no law stating that Speaker and MLAs to be asked to declare their assets before the Lokayukt. Speaker doesn’t come under the ambit of the Lokayukt but MLAs do come and they must file the required details to the Lokayukt.

The Lok Ayukta has asked all the members of Delhi Assembly to submit details of their assets. This order from the ombudsman is in harmony with the demands of the Lokpal Movement of 2011 led by anti-corruption leader Anna Hazare, with then social sector activist Arvind Kejriwal being his chief lieutenant and deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia as the head of the volunteer force.

Sidharth Mishra 2

A Resurgent Congress In Mood To Fight Alone in Delhi, Punjab, Haryana

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee doesn’t seem to be much enamoured by the what the newspapers in the national Capital have to say about a possible alliance between the Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). Speaking at the rally of Opposition parties at her bastion in Kolkata last Saturday, Banerjee said, “Hum saath ladega aur Dilli mein saatho seat jitega (We shall fight together and win all the seven Lok Sabha seats in the national capital).”

While the Trinamool Congress leader said this, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal heard her in rapt attention. Earlier during his own turn to address the rally, Kejriwal remained focused on spewing venom on the BJP. This was less than 24-hous after the AAP had declared in the national Capital that it would contest all seven seats in Delhi on its own blaming the Congress of being arrogant.

The local leadership in the three north Indian states of Haryana, Punjab and Delhi, where Kejriwal insists on his party having a presence, are all against any idea of entering into an alliance with AAP, whose rise is rooted in running an anti-corruption campaign in the early part of this decade against the Congress governments both at the Centre and in the states.

Vinod Kumar Shukla

INA Govt’s Rule In Andaman & Nicobar Was Fictional

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government is in the name changing spree these days, if the Uttar Pradesh government has changed name of Allahabad to Prayagraj without delving deep into the fact that the name Allahabad did not have Islamic connotation rather it was named as Illvas which became Allahabad with the passage of time. Ill was father/mother of King Pururva who is mentioned in Rig Veda. There are many names that have been changed.

Renaming Ross Island to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Dweep, Neil Island as Shaheed Dweep and Havelock Island as Swaraj Dweep is another similar move disrespecting local sentiment. These islands were previously named after officers of the British Indian forces -- Brigadier James Neill, General Sir Henry Havelock and a marine surveyor, Daniel Ross and this attempt has been made to do away with colonial past. However, some of the colonial names are still abound like Hodsons Horse, Skinners Horse, Outram and Napier, etc and yet, it in no way diminishes their 'Indianness'.

There is no harm in recognising and celebrating freedom fighters like Subhas Chandra Bose that to in an attempt to popularise the unsung saga of Andaman and Nicobar Islands in the freedom struggle. There are many freedom fighters who were sent to Kala Pani (Andaman and Nicobar) but selectively picking them will be termed as partisan and populism. Andaman and Nicobar Islands are shining outpost of India with immeasurable strategic possibilities that remains untapped. There are many islands that are uninhibited but security of them needs to be beefed up.