Looks like Delhi CM Shri Arvind Kejriwal Ji has set Shamshad Begum’s iconic yesteryear melody “Kahin Pe Nighaen Kahin Pe Nishana”* in a loop and is listening to it nonstop. Not winning any of the 7 Lok Sabha seats of Delhi is no doubt worrisome, and so leading to desperation for Mr. Kejriwal. From being equidistant from both BJP and Congress in its initial avatar, to a desperate attempt to tie-up AAP with Congress, pointing out BJP as a bigger evil, Mr. Kejriwal seems to have learned vote politics fairly well.
In your face rebuff by Delhi, and chairing a monetarily crippled organization hasn’t deterred Mr. Kejriwal from attempting another hat-trick. This time, something which he thinks can bring in votes from the women voters – free rides on DTC buses, cluster buses and Delhi Metro.
Free bus & Metro rides is a bad idea. Spending at least Rs 1,000 Crore a year on people who don’t need this subsidy (minimum 95% are above Urban Poverty Line) consequently deprives those who need this serious money. Delhi Government would need to spend over Rs 1,000 Crores every year on this freebie. This amount is sufficient to construct over 10,000 dwellings for the most needy in the city. Delhi’s acclaimed gynaecologist Dr. Meenakshi Ahuja shared an interesting insight for Mr. Arvind Kejriwal: “Women are looking for a safe city and equal opportunities, not free lunches:) I wish AK could see that!”. I am sure Dr. Ahuja, AK is in no mood to see that. He can only see votes and this looked like an easy trick to pull off at this time.
In another tweet, Lucknow’s Vibhav Dwivedi wondered aloud, “If Delhi Government is ready to compensate Delhi Metro for losses by this move. They should have reduced the price for everyone rather than giving free to few (sic).”. Rightly so.
Next six months of course are going to give sleepless nights to Mr. Kejriwal. Not that his government has not worked, but perhaps because he has lost his own confidence on his party and its work.
Silver lining in the cloud? I am sure many businesses would spot a great business opportunity in this, and we would see more women in organized sector employment once this move is operational. Till then, let Aam Aadmi Party count on Aam Aurat votes to win Delhi yet again.
*looking at someone while aiming at someone else.