The Delhi Assembly on Thursday adopted the Motion of Thanks for the Lieutenant-Governor's address after members of the opposition BJP walked out of the House saying enough time had not been given to all the members to speak on the motion.
In her address, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit said the BJP was in the habit of walking out because it could not digest the truth. “We are on the treasury benches because of the people's support in three consecutive Assembly elections,” she quipped.
Stating that the Delhi Government's achievements had been included in the L-G's address, the Chief Minister added, “One can see the social benefits from the flyovers, metro railway network, underpasses, foot over-bridges and roads constructed by the Government.”
Claiming that the Capital's transport scenario has improved significantly, the Chief Minister said her government had shown courage in shifting the entire public transport system from diesel to CNG. Besides, she said, it had introduced low-floor buses, including air-conditioned ones, in Delhi. She also said that 6,000 such buses would be operating in Delhi before the start of the Commonwealth Games.
In the field of health, too, she said there had been a positive change. While there used to be just 1,900 hospital beds in Delhi in 1998, the number has increased to 38,000 now. Similarly, the number of government hospitals had increased from 15 to 42 and these also cater to the needs of patients from other States, who constitute 30 per cent of all patients.
Denying the Opposition charge that hers was an “insensitive government”, the Chief Minister said her government had enhanced the minimum wages by 33 per cent, the highest in the country. The Government, she said, had also done a lot for the development of women and children and the ‘Laadli' scheme had been instrumental in correcting the gender ratio.
In the field of education, Ms. Dikshit said the government schools have performed better than public schools and over one lakh children were enrolled in them last year. For higher education, five new universities were opened and Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University was upgraded.
The Delhi Government has also been able to start its own power generation after a gap of nearly a decade. Besides, power rates have not been hiked and concessions are being given on low-consumption, she said.
The Chief Minister said improvement in water sector would be sought in the next two years so that there is equitable distribution of water to the 1.70 crore people of Delhi.
She said the Government had also provided concession of Rs.40 per gas cylinder when its rate was hiked and is paying the highest monthly pension of Rs.1,000 to the physically handicapped, widows and aged persons.
As for the Opposition charge that there was “over-spending and wasteful expenditure on the Commonwealth Games'', she said the allegation was wrong as the infrastructure being constructed would become an integral part of heritage of the city and would be used for many decades to come.
“There would be no dearth of funds for developmental activities in Delhi. We will concentrate on betterment of social services after the Commonwealth Games,” she said.