Hard Worker or Attention Seeker: Delhi Split on Kejriwal’s Dharna

While some say that AAP was left with no choice, others call it another political gimmick.

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On 11 June 2018, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his ministers took to the streets of Delhi to stage a dharna, again. The reason? That IAS officers are not cooperating with Delhi’s ministers in an effort to derail governance in the city, claims Kejriwal.

The firebrand chief minister has been stationed at Lieutenant Governor (L-G) Anil Baijal’s house for a few days now. Meanwhile, on 17 June, members of his party marched to the prime minster’s house in full verve. Soon, the high-profile political drama took a serious turn when deputy CM Manish Sisodia and Delhi minister Satyendra Jain were hospitalised after being on a hunger strike for days.

Amidst all of this, what does the common Dilliwala think? We hit the road to find the answer.

Kabhi Haan, Kabhi Na

Delhi seems to be divided over Kejriwal’s “activism”. While some say that he was left with no choice, others feel that taking to streets is unbecoming of a chief minister.

He is the chief minister. Whether people believe it or not, he has the authority. There are laws that protect him. Doing dharnas, holding protests is not going to work because that’s only going to stop the functioning of our government.
Shreya Chawla, Resident of Mehrauli, South Delhi

Kamal, a resident of east Delhi, was of the opinion that Kejriwal is tarnishing the image of the national capital and the people of Delhi are suffering. “As far as I can see, there is no work done in all these years. Everything has been left to God,” he said.

Some residents, however, feel that Kejriwal was left with no choice because he was “not being allowed to work.”

The previous LG created drama, the new LG is doing the same. How is AAP supposed to work?
Mohammad Yakub, Resident Jama Masjid

“The BJP runs the Centre and the Delhi Corporation. The AAP gets stuck in between the two,” said Mohammad Yakub, a resident of Jama Masjid and a biryani vendor.

Citing Kejriwal government’s “good work” in the education sector, Kapil Mehta, a resident of Paschim Vihar felt that the BJP government wants to “eliminate him”.

“The BJP is in the Centre. They don’t want to let Kejriwal work. They want to eliminate him,” said Mehta.


A Hard Worker...

Several residents who support Kejkriwal said that they are with him for all the good work that he has done.

“We need work to be done and someone who can provide us with essential facilities. He has done so much in the healthcare sector. We never got as many facilities either under the Congress or the BJP rule,” said Manoj Kumar, a e-rickshaw driver from Chandni Chowk.

Whether it’s the chief minister, a minister or the President, if he is fighting for the poor, any dharna is justified.
Manoj Kumar, Resident of Chandni Chowk

“He has done a lot for the country. He has provided facilities in hopitals and education. He has done excellent work,” said Mohammad Shoaib, a resident of Delhi Gate.

“I feel Kejriwal is doing a very good job. They are doing good work with government schools and are encouraging the children. He is working hard, that’s for sure,” Mehta said.


...or Just an Attention Seeker?

“All this is just being done to be in the limelight,” said Pratibha Jindal, a resident of Hauz Khas.

Babita Gupta, another Hauz Khas resident, said that Kejrival is still in his “activism phase” which is what tempts him to hold dharnas so often.

“He has had the habit of holding dharnas since before he became the chief minister. I don’t blame him. He is jut practising. He has the same reply for every question. Giving excuses and apologies is all he does. He only knows how to play the blame game, ” said Gupta.

He is not doing his job. He is at fault, so he is putting the blame on the LG. Every day that goes in a dharna, Delhi goes without a chief minister
Kaustubh, Resident of Vasant Kunj

Pradeep, a driver with Ola Cabs, said that this is just a gimmick ahead of the 2019 elections.

“Kejriwal himself has brought the administration to a halt. The officers aren’t affiliated to any party. Holding dharnas doesn’t suit any minister. We demand answers from the state government, not the Centre. All this is just a show ahead of 2019 elections,” said Pradeep.

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