'Jan Lokpal Bill will be passed at Ramlila Maidan'
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Saturday said the Jan Lokpal Bill is almost ready and will be passed next month at Delhi's Ramlila Maidan, amidst the people.
Defending his 32-hour agitation in the national capital, Kejriwal said some media houses are portraying the party negatively.
"Corruption is the biggest issue for our government. We have to fight corruption. The Jan Lokpal Bill is almost ready, and in the month of February, we will have a special Delhi assembly session at the Ramlila Maidan and in the midst of people the bill will be passed," Kejriwal said, addressing a rally at Chhatrasal stadium here.
"The bill promises strict action against people who indulge in corruption. Under this law, the (corrupt person) will lose his (or her) job and will also be sent to prison," the chief minister said.
He explained that the intention behind the law was not to send people to prison but to check corruption and instil a sense of fear.
"I am not saying corruption has been eradicated from Delhi. But ever since we assumed power, I have heard, and people have told me, that there is now a sense of fear, and that is a good thing. I can now say that corruption has been reduced, at least by 20 to 30 percent," Kejriwal said as the crowd cheered him.
The Delhi chief minister also said that the safety and security of women was an important concern of his government.
"We have constituted a committee Friday under the chairmanship of Delhi Chief Secretary Sanjoy Kumar Srivastava. There will be a separate body for the protection and security of women. The body, comprising retired army personnel and homeguards, will ensure protection and security to women," Kejriwal said.
Defending his 32-hour agitation in the heart of Delhi a couple of days back, Kejriwal said it was for the first time that a chief minister had protested for women's safety, but by imposing Section 144 the central government proved that they were not serious about the issue.
"The central government has called my protest against the constitution but there is no provision which says that a CM cannot sit on a dharna. If I have to agitate for women's safety again I won't hesitate," he said.
He said the people of Delhi should "govern themselves" and therefore a law pertaining to 'mohalla sabhas' was being prepared.
"If the people keep on approaching us for every little problem, it will be difficult for us to govern effectively. Therefore, we want people to govern themselves. We want to transfer power to them," Kejriwal said.
"We will divide Delhi into clusters and elections will be held in these mohallas, headed by a chairman. We will give them funds and they will meet every week and decide how to spend it on water, electricity, cleanliness, roads, parks etc. In the next 15 days, a draft of this law will be finalised," he added.
Blaming some media houses for "intentionally trying to create hurdles" for the party, Kejriwal said: "We are trying to save the country from corruption and if media projects AAP in a negative light who will save the country?"
(Posted on 25-01-2014)