'Draft of Bill granting full Statehood to Delhi ready'

NEW DELHI AUG. 10. The Deputy Prime Minister, L.K. Advani, today declared that the Home Ministry had prepared a draft of the Bill to grant full Statehood to Delhi and `hopefully' it would be introduced during the current session of Parliament and find support from the political parties.

``I hope when it is presented in Parliament, everybody will support the Statehood Bill. The Sheila Dikshit Government had also sent us a resolution passed by the Delhi Assembly in this regard and the issue was part of the election manifesto of the Delhi BJP in the past,'' he said.

Launching the BJP's election campaign for the Assembly elections through the `Parivartan rally' at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium organised by the Delhi unit of the party, Mr. Advani said that the BJP cadres should fan out to various parts of Delhi to ensure the defeat of the Sheila Dikshit Government.

Calling for a change in the power equations in Delhi, Mr. Advani said a more important task was to change the face of Delhi.

Stating that the Delhi unit BJP president, Madan Lal Khurana, was the party's Chief Ministerial candidate, Mr. Advani said the issues regarding unauthorised colonies, JJ clusters, regularisation of industries and illegal encroachments in DDA raised by Mr. Khurana were very important and an effort had been made to address them.

In his address, Mr. Khurana charged the Sheila Dikshit Government with failure on all fronts and claimed that whatever had been achieved in the shape of Metro Rail or construction of bridges and flyovers was his doing and the Congress Government had only capitalised on it.

The Labour Minister, Sahib Singh Verma, charged the Chief Minister with being an outsider and remarked she had little knowledge about the problems of Delhi and its rural pockets.

The Union Minister of State for Sports and Youth Affairs, Vijay Goel, said there was total collapse of governance in Delhi as the Congress Government had failed to discharge its basic obligation to provide civic amenities to the poor sections.