‘Forget affiliations, vote for work’

Greater Kailash AAP MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj asks constituents to think about future

Published - February 04, 2020 01:00 am IST - New Delhi

Greater Kailash AAP MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj during a campaign in the constituency on Monday.

Greater Kailash AAP MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj during a campaign in the constituency on Monday.

Around 5 p.m. on Monday, Aam Aadmi Party’s sitting MLA from Greater Kailash Saurabh Bharadwaj arrived at Fashion Street in Shahpur Jat in an open jeep, followed by about half-a-dozen electric scooters and a dozen motorcycles.

As Mr. Bharadwaj took a chair for a public meeting, he was garlanded with currency notes. “Five years back, when we came to power, we wanted the name of our village to be known by everyone... Now, there will be no one in Delhi and nearby areas who has not heard about the Shahpur Jat Festival,” the AAP leader said.

“People say that leaders do not listen to us and are inaccessible... Today, Home Minister Amit Shah is coming to Chirag Delhi. I said, it is good that they remembered our village. The elections should be held more often so that such big leaders come here,” he added.

Towards the end of his five-minute speech, Mr. Bharadwaj asked the people to set aside their affiliation to political parties when they vote. “You should ponder about who is thinking about your house and the development of the village and about your children’s future. Elections will come and go and these leaders will come and go. Think, who has worked for you in the past five years? and who will work for you in the next five years?” he said.

After the speech, amid chants of “ Hamara vidhayak kaisa ho... Saurabh Bharadwaj jaisa ho ”, AAP volunteers distributed ladoos close to the weight of the AAP MLA as a symbolic “ Tulabhara ”.

“We are telling the people that if we have worked for you, then vote for us,” Mr. Bharadwaj told The Hindu.

As the AAP leader left for a padyatra in the area, some residents said that schools and hospitals have become better under the AAP government. Others said that though some work had been, it was not as much as had been promised.

Barabar ka takkar hoga (There will be tight competition),” said Ram Charitr, 47, from Bihar, who had voted for AAP in the 2015 Assembly elections.

Inside his previous house in Shahpur Jat, Mr. Charitr said that he has now moved to Tughlaqabad. “In this area they [AAP] have done work, but in my area, they have not done anything. So I will not vote for AAP this time,” he said. When asked about the BJP’s focus on Shaheen Bagh, CAA, and NRC in the run-up to the polls, he said it would not affect his voting. “What difference will it make to poor people?”

Ashish Awasthi, 38, who runs a business in Shahpur Jat, said: “They [AAP] have not done too bad or too good. I have heard the labourers saying that schools have gotten better. Our family always votes for the BJP, but AAP has a chance.”

Rekha, 19, who studies in Gargi SKV, a government school, said: “The school has gotten better after Arvind Kejriwal came. There are new buildings and better facilities.” Her mother, Rajbala, 40, said that they have been getting “zero” electricity bills for the past four months. “There is a lot of support for Mr. Kejriwal and my vote is for jhaado [AAP’s poll symbol],” she added.

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