‘My bill is not zero, but AAP should come back’

Many express happiness over Kejriwal government’s work

Updated - January 28, 2020 01:41 am IST

Published - January 28, 2020 01:40 am IST - New Delhi

AAP’s Kalkaji candidate Atishi during a door-to-door campaign at Govindpuri on Monday.

AAP’s Kalkaji candidate Atishi during a door-to-door campaign at Govindpuri on Monday.

As AAP Kalkaji candidate Atishi walked through the narrow lanes of Govindpuri on Monday evening, she smiled, waved, hugged people and asked for votes.

When asked what she is promising to the people, Ms. Atishi told The Hindu , “The promise we are giving is the continuation of the last five years. In the last five years, people have seen drastic changes in their lives be it electricity, water, school, free bus rides and free medicines. People really want to see a continuation of that.”

After she left the area, the opinion on the ground was divided mainly into two groups: The ones who enjoyed the benefits of multiple waiver schemes of the government and “improvement” in government schools and hospitals and the people who did not directly benefit from these.

Voices from ground

Ms. Atishi had hugged Shakuntla Devi, 50, at gali number 9 and asked her vote. “I will vote for Kejriwal. Our electricity bill is zero and water is also free,” Ms. Devi told The Hindu . She said that they have done a lot of work.

Hume kya mila he ? (What did we get?),” asked Mahesh Kumar, 50, who runs Khurana Thread House at gali number 10. “All the free schemes are for the poor people. We did not get anything,” Mr. Kumar said.

He said that he had heard that the government schools and hospitals have become better, but his children are not studying in government schools and the family do not go to government hospitals. “But there is chance that he [Kejriwal] could still win,” he added.

Parvez Aktar, 43, a customer at the shop, who does embroidery work, is a staunch supporter of AAP. “My 14-year-old daughter studies in Class IX at a government school which has improved a lot in terms of infrastructure and quality of education. Even teachers have become more sincere and they have even made a WhatsApp group of parents to send updates about the children and their homeworks.”

The contrast couldn’t be more stark than at Laxman Khanna’s general store. “The electricity bill has not reduced and I am paying for water also. If they are giving things for free, the money comes from the tax we pay. They have not done anything. I will vote for the BJP,” Mr. Khanna said sitting behind the counter of the shop.

Sitting near the step of the shop, 60-year-old Keval Sahani, who had come to the shop with his grandson, had a completely different opinion. “I will vote for Kejriwal. Our electricity bill has come down and water is free. He has worked for us,” Mr. Sahani said.

Amarjeet Kaur, 52, who works as a supervisor at her uncle’s company and owns a house in the area said: “Our electricity bill is not zero and my children are studying in government schools. They [AAP] have done work. They should come back to power,” she said.

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