NEW DELHI: With a thumping majority to back him as the next Chief Minister for a third successive term, Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal faces an envious but challenging task over the next five years.
In the first town hall meeting held by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in his own constituency, Kejriwal had presented the party’s report card, recounting the last five years, while providing a blueprint of tasks to be taken up by his administration in the next five.
The main emphasis was on ridding the national capital of pollution and mountains of garbage, providing 24x7 electricity supply and piped water supply, realigning the roads to free them of traffic congestion and pepping up the Yamuna front.
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However, with most of garbage removal work and cleaning work under BJP ruled municipal corporation where it’s not in power, the AAP, despite its victory, could end up as a supplicant.
The target of reaching piped water round the clock to every household is another big challenge, especially after the controversy following a central government report stating that Delhi has the dirtiest drinking water.
Basic services like good roads, sewage system, mohalla clinics to be set up in the more than 1,700 unauthorised colonies is another promise of Kejriwal to intensify its delivery-oriented government image.
None of these is likely to be easy.
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Another major target of AAP is to clean the heavily polluted Yamuna river and beautify its banks to make it a tourist attraction. The efficacy of the project is dependent on upper riparian states, one of them a BJP ruled one. Getting cooperation for the project again will not be easy.
AAP has also promised to augment public transport and expand the metro network, besides boosting the roads network.
On the anvil are the purchase of close to 3,000 buses, besides 1,000 electric ones, to boost the Delhi Transport Corporation fleet. The funds for these have to be mobilised.
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Like many cities across the world, Aam Aadmi Party also plans to make Delhi a 24x7 city, but the project will initially be on a pilot basis and will need a lot of planning before it can be launched.
Despite the odds, AAP, which has delivered on several fronts, is likely to be watched closely by both critics and friends.