NEW DELHI: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday stepped up its offensive against the Delhi government and the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) over alleged corruption in the construction of classrooms. Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari said on Wednesday that the cost of the project was increased on mere verbal orders.
Targeting the government, the BJP leader said that it made much of allotting large sums for education but had spent only half the amount and did not release funds to Municipal Corporation schools.
Referring to the reported incident of a ceiling fan falling in a school in Trilokpuri in east Delhi, he said that the government claimed that its schools had world-class facilities, but on Wednesday a ceiling fan had fallen on a student and his skull was fractured. “The student is fighting for his life in GTB Hospital. The Kejriwal government is responsible for this incident. It has committed corruption on a large scale. Today, a fan has fallen, tomorrow something else may fall on the children, but the government is not serious about their safety,” he said.
Earlier, the Delhi BJP leaders had alleged a Rs 2,000-crore “scam” in the construction of classrooms in Delhi government schools and demanded the resignation of Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, who is in charge of the education department. They later filed a police complaint and a petition before the Delhi Lokayukta seeking an inquiry into the matter.
Responding to the BJP’s allegation, Sisodia last week served a legal notice for criminal defamation against Tiwari, BJP’s West Delhi MP Parvesh Sahib Singh, and the leader of opposition in the Delhi Assembly, Vijender Gupta, for their “false allegations” against the government over the cost of classroom construction. He also dared BJP leaders to a debate over the quality of schools in Delhi and in BJP-ruled states.
“There are 1,033 schools under the Delhi government, for which the budget allocation is 23.51 per cent, whereas, for 743 schools under the North Delhi Municipal Corporation, the Delhi government has allotted only 1.46 per cent from the budget,” said Tiwari. He said that the AAP was committing corruption by increasing the cost of projects to benefit those it favoured. “In Zone 23, Rs 27.77 crore was allotted for a project of the Delhi government, but it was verbally increased to Rs 54 crore. This indicates a big scam which is being exposed by the Delhi BJP,” he said.