AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal hit out at the BJP for making false claims and mocked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for calling him an “anarchist”.
“The mood in Delhi is different from what it was a year ago. Though the Congress is nowhere in the picture, we are more popular than the BJP and ahead of it in public perception for the ensuing elections,” the Aam Aadmi Party chief said here.
Delivering a lecture on “Delhi Elections – Opportunities and Possibilities of Alternate Politics in India” at St. Aloysius Degree College in the city, the former Delhi chief minister claimed that people wanted his party to return to power in the capital as they saw a qualitative difference in governance during its 49-day rule.
“People saw dramatic changes in governance during our short rule, as we were able to curb corruption, provide power and supply water to them within two months of coming to power,” Kejriwal said.
Dubbing the Bharatiya Janata Party pro-corporate for serving its vested interests, Kejriwal lamented that politics had become an investment and a profitable business in the country.
“Political parties should not raise funds from industrialists, as they will expect favours in return from the party that comes to power. We will fight elections with money donated by the poor unlike the BJP and other parties,” he told the audience of about 500 people.
Referring to Modi’s claim that over seven crore people had benefitted from the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana launched in 2014, Kejriwal said most of the bank accounts opened in the last four months have zero balance.
“Whom is Modi fooling? How do poor people benefit by just having a bank account when they do not have sufficient money for living or saving to deposit? Should opening bank accounts be the priority of the government? Is it what the common man wants,” Kejriwal asked, drawing thunderous applause.
AAP leader in Karnataka and former Infosys board member V. Balakrishanan, who contested in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections from Bangalore Central constituency, and veteran freedom fighter H.S. Doreswamy were present on the occasion.
Earlier in the day, Kejriwal attended a fund-raising luncheon meeting, organised by the AAP’s Karnataka unit to raise money for contesting the upcoming elections to the 70-member Delhi assembly.
“About 200 people donated Rs.20,000 each to have lunch with Kejriwal at a hotel in the city, and 150 of them attended,” a party source said.