Chief Minister Shri Arvind Kejriwal on Monday highlighted the achievements of the Aam Aadmi Party-led state government while addressing the legislative assembly. He said that on several fronts, the governments has gone on to do double the work that was done by previous governments in Delhi in its 65-year period before 2015. He highlighted the key initiatives and policies implemented by his government that have brought immense relief to the citizens of Delhi. In his address, CM Shri Arvind Kejriwal stated that the Delhi Model has shone because of the government’s commitment to zero corruption, providing free electricity, water, pilgrimage, bus travel for women, and ration to the people. Despite providing all these facilities for free, the Delhi government’s budget is in profit, while the budget of BJP ruled states is in loss.
Highlighting his point by giving an example, Shri Arvind Kejriwal said that recently he met a person, who is a senior executive in an MNC. He said that this individual travels a lot throughout the country because of the nature of his work and added that the person in the last couple of months has passed through Bengaluru, Chennai, Mumbai, Kolkata and Delhi. He went on to tell the Delhi CM that slowly and steadily Delhi is becoming the most liveable city in the country. Shri Arvind Kejriwal said that this is a very big statement for the work that the Delhi Government has been involved in for years now.
He went on to add that the ‘Delhi Model’ has given a ray of hope to the citizens of the country. He further said that the ‘Delhi Model’ has shown the people what an educated and an honest state government can go on to do. He explained that the ‘Delhi Model’ is a model that provides holistic growth to a person from every strata of society. It is an all-inclusive model and does not discriminate on the basis of religion, caste and political leanings of the individual. It is a model that has ‘zero corruption’.
He further explained that it is a model that gives citizens relief from skyrocketing inflation. He stated that a survey done by the Central Government recently also highlighted that the inflation in Delhi is the least in the country. He added that it is a model that focuses on education, healthcare and public transport to ease the lives of the residents of Delhi. He also said that it is a model that keeps the citizens at its centre and therefore provides them free electricity, water and good quality roads.
Shri Arvind Kejriwal said that he has been travelling in other states of the country such as Gujarat and Punjab, and when he interacts with the people there, they find it hard to believe that electricity in a state can be provided for free. He added that the people tell him about the photos of Delhi schools that they see in social media and they cannot believe that a government school can look so beautiful. He said that for the first time since Independence a state government is working so hard for the people and providing such facilities which they did not know could be given to them. He pointed out that there was a time when Delhi was known for scams such as the CWG Scam, but now the people know it for its world-class schools.
He said that the amount of development work that happened in Delhi over the last 8 years is more than what happened over the 65 years before it. He went on to say that today he will not talk about education and healthcare as everyone already knows about it. The CM said that today he will speak about areas other than education and healthcare. “People keep telling us that we talk a lot about education and healthcare and therefore today I will highlight our works in other areas. Despite providing several services to the residents of Delhi for free such as electricity, water, education, healthcare facilities, free bus rides for woman and free Teerth Yatra for senior citizens, the Budget of the Delhi Government is in profit. Look at the situation of several BJP-ruled states where despite providing no facilities to the people, their state government budget is in losses worth several lakh crores of rupees,” he said.
Shri Arvind Kejriwal said that when AAP formed the government in 2015, there were several key infrastructure projects such as Signature Bridge and Barapullah flyover that had been pending for years due to corruption, but the AAP-led government completed these projects quickly and further went on to make 28 flyovers in Delhi. “Between 1998 and 2015, in seventeen long years, 193 kilometres of Delhi Metro tracks were built in the city. Now it is 390 kilometres. There were 140 metro stations until 2015 and now there are 286 metro stations,” he said.
He added that until 2015, there were 5842 buses in Delhi and now there are 7379 buses in the city. He went on to say that providing free bus rides to citizens is an advanced concept and very few cities have been able to make it possible. The CM added that Delhi is in that elite list for providing free bus rides to women and said that over 100 crore free rides have been taken by women in the last 3 years. Shri Arvind Kejriwal also praised the ‘One Delhi’ App developed by the Delhi Government through which citizens can get the details of which bus will arrive at their bus stop at what time. He also praised Delhi for becoming the EV capital of the country.
Speaking about providing sewer connections in Delhi, he said that in the 65 years of Independence until 2015, 227 unauthorised colonies in Delhi were provided sewer connection. In the last eight years, another 747 unauthorised colonies have been provided with sewer connections. He further added that out of the average 750-800 MGD of sewer that is released in Delhi every day, until 2015 only 373 MGD of sewer was treated. The remaining would be released into the Yamuna river. Presently, 632 MGD of sewer is treated in Delhi.
Shri Arvind Kejriwal said that until 2015, only 985 colonies in Delhi had a water pipeline and this has now been increased to 1671 colonies. Elaborating that this could go into the Guinness Book of World Records, the CM said that in the last eight years, 5138 kilometre of water pipeline has been added in Delhi. Stating that earlier there was no proper mechanism to know how much water was being sent to different parts of the city, the CM said that 3000 bulk water meters have been added to different pipelines to make transportation of water more efficient.
Elaborating the work done to combat Air Pollution, Shri Arvind Kejriwal said over the years, the air quality of Delhi had become very polluted and it was only since 2015 that work on cleaning the air had begun. He said that the air in Delhi at the moment is 30 percent cleaner. Providing some data to state his point, he highlighted that the average PM 10 has reduced from 324 to 223, PM 2.5 has reduced from 149 to 103. He added that in 2016, Delhi faced 26 days where the AQI was in the ‘severe’ category and said that last year, there were just six such days. I’m 2016, there were 109 days where the AQI was in ‘Good’ category and last year there were 163 such days.
Lauding the efforts of the state government to plant trees in Delhi, the CM said that the per capita forest in Delhi is the most amongst other cities in the country. Providing data he said that it is 11.6 square meter per person in Delhi, while it is 10.6 in Hyderabad, 10.4 in Bengaluru, 6.0 in Mumbai, 2.6 in Chennai and 0.1 in Kolkata.
Highlighting the poor state of healthcare facilities in Delhi before 2015, he revealed how the state government since then has made 515 Mohalla Clinics, 4 Mahila Mohalla Clinics and 30 Polyclinics. He added that over 2 crore people visit these Mohalla Clinics throughout the year.
Speaking about power cuts in Delhi before the AAP Government came to power, the CM said that he remembered power cuts of 7-8 hours during the summer season in 2014. He added that there are no power cuts in Delhi at the moment. He said that in 2014, if the electricity requirment in the city exceeded 6000 megawatt, then there would be load shedding. Last year, Delhi faced a peak demand of 7695 megawatt and yet there was no load shedding. He also revealed that the transmission loss in Delhi is merely 7 percent, which is one of the lowest in the world.
Highlighting what the state government plans to achieve in the coming few years, the CM said that the Budget announced this year is perhaps the most important one as it gives a huge infrastructure push of Rs 21,000 crore. The CM said that sanitation and beautification of Delhi is one of the main priorities this year and said that work on it has already begun. He said that PWD will be involved in the beautification of 1400 kilometres of road in Delhi that come under its maintenance. He also said that daily the footpath and the central divider will be cleaned by the department. He added that the entire 1400 kilometres of roads under the PWD will be repaired one at a time, and all the dividers that are empty at the moment will get plants to increase greenery in the area. He also said that every three months, the roads and the signage including the zebra crossing will be re-painted. With all of this, in the next one year, he said that dust pollution in Delhi will further reduce by 30 percent.
Speaking about the AAP Government’s focus on road infrastructure, he said that the state government has already built 28 flyovers in the city and is working on another 26 flyovers in different parts of Delhi. He added that some of these projects are in their advanced stages. He also added that three unique double-deckers flyovers will be built in Delhi. Explaining the concept behind this idea, the CM said that around 4-5 years ago, the Delhi Government conceptualized it and said that their construction will save a lot of public money.
The Delhi CM also announced that three modern bus ports, along the lines of an airport, will be developed in Delhi in Anand Vihar, Sarai Kale Khan and Dwarka. He also added that two multi-level bus depots will be constructed in Delhi, and it will be the first in the country. He added that buses will be parked on the six floors of these facilities. Two modern bus terminals and nine new bus depots will also be created in Delhi, highlighting the massive push in the transport department in the country. He also added that 1400 new bus queue shelters will be created and these will have modern displays providing citizens the details about when the bus will arrive and so on.
He also said that 1600 new electric buses will be procured by the state government this year, and added that the target was to have 10,480 buses in Delhi by 2025, which would be sufficient to cater to the needs of its residents. By 2025, 80 percent of them will be electric, and at that point Delhi will be one of the few cities in the world where so many electric buses will be running at the same time. He also said that with such a big fleet of electric buses, depots are also required where these buses can stay at night and get charged and therefore 57 bus depots in Delhi will be electrified.
Cleaning of the Yamuna river has always been a focus point for the Delhi Government and the CM said that a six-point action plan has been formed for this purpose. As part of it, new STPs and decentralized STPs will also be constructed, the current STPs will also be upgraded and with this the capacity of Delhi to treat sewage will be increased to 890 MGD. In 2015, this capacity was only 370 MGD, he said.
In a landmark decision, the Delhi Government has decided to provide free sewer connections to the households of Delhi that still lack a connection. Explaining the rationale behind this move, Shri Arvind Kejriwal explained that in several parts of Delhi, including the Trans-Yamuna region, the sewer lines have been placed in all colonies, but since the sewer connection is expensive, several households have still not got a connection and they release their waste into the drains that go into the river. To stop this problem, the Delhi Government will now provide free sewer connections to the households of Delhi. He added that when the AAP Government was formed in 2015, then only 227 colonies in Delhi had a sewer connection. He added that by the end of this year 1317 colonies will have a sewer connection.
Speaking about the elimination of the three infamous ‘Mountains of Garbage’ in Delhi, Shri Arvind Kejriwal said that after AAP won the MCD elections in December last year, the CM had a look at the former BJP-led MCD’s plan to eliminate the piles of waste. He said that according to that plan, the BJP-led MCD would take 197 years to clear off all the waste. The CM added that the AAP Government will get it cleared by December 2024. Highlighting that Delhi has erstwhile always performed badly in the Swachhta Survekshan rankings under the BJP-led MCD, the CM said that in the coming few years, Delhi will go on to top that list.
He concluded by speaking about what the Delhi Government plans to do in the next couple of years. “Schools and hospitals under the MCD will be fixed at priority, 100 more Mahila Mohalla Clinics will be built, more Mohalla Clinics will be built within the premises of the Delhi Metro. The state government is working at mission mode to provide clean drinking water to all residents of Delhi. The current production of water in Delhi is 1000 MGD and the aim is to increase this to 1240 MGD by 2025. In the next 3-4 months, a flow meter would be installed in every water treatment plant, every UGR, secondary UGR and this will enable the state government to use water more efficiently,” he said.