Kejriwal's new broom seeks to sweep clean
23 December 2013
Arvind Kejriwal of the Aam Admi Party, set to take over the reins of Delhi as state chief minister, will start his term by scrapping the most obnoxious symbol of power in India – the much-coveted red beacons on VIP cars.
Moreover, his ministers will stay in their private residences, avoiding government-provided accommodation in the plushest parts of Delhi, to which they are entitled. Kejriwal himself, however, will make one concession to being in power – he will move from his Ghaziabad residence to a government house.
Kejriwal has also promised early action on providing 700 litres of water to all households and an audit of power companies. The cost of power in Delhi was a major election plank for the AAP.
Amid all this, there could be a sort of conflict of interest, as Kejriwal, even while attempting to govern Delhi, will also be busy with the party's election campaign for the general elections, due in a few months' time.
"We have six months in power before the LS polls but this is the time when I will also be travelling all over to campaign for the party. It is a huge challenge for me but in the next few days, we will work out how this will be managed," Kejriwal said.
Immediately after the AAP is sworn in, the party intends to press on with its agenda. "We have no intention of going to any party for assistance. If Congress withdraws support at any time, we will go back to the people and ask for a re-election. However, as long as AAP is in power, we will try and implement as many of our promises as is possible," Kejriwal said.
The Delhi bureaucracy is in some apprehension to gauge the largely unknown entities set to take office, as the state cabinet will include many persons with no political experience – including Kejriwal himself, Manish Sisodia, and new MLA Somnath Bharti. It remains to be seen how AAP manages traditional concerns like adequate representation for various communities and weaker sections of society.