Kejriwal takes oath, promises to act against graft


NewZNew (New Delhi) : Capping a momentous election victory, Arvind Kejriwal was on Saturday sworn-in as Delhi Chief Minister along with six other ministers, and, in a first, decided not to keep any portfolio with himself.

Four days after his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) crushed both the BJP and the Congress by winning 67 of the 70 Assembly seats, Kejriwal took oath of office in the presence of over a lakh people who packed the Ramlila Maidan, venue of Anna Hazare’s anti-corruption campaign that brought the former revenue service officer to political forefront.

Manish Sisodia, who has been appointed as deputy Chief Minister, and five other ministers Asim Ahmed Khan, Sandeep Kumar, Satyendar Jain, Gopal Rai and Jitender Singh Tomar were also administered oath of office and secrecy by Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung.

Shortly after he took office for the second time in one year, it was announced that the Chief Minister will not keep any portfolio but oversee overall functioning of the government.

In his address after taking oath, 46-year-old Kejriwal unveiled the priorities of his government which included steps against corruption, communal elements and VIP culture and assured Delhiites that his government will fight for full statehood for the national capital.

Warning his party leaders and workers against arrogance, he said this was the reason for the defeat of Congress and BJP, which had received huge majority in Lok Sabha polls just nine months ago.

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Terming the verdict as a “miracle of God”, Kejriwal said, “I knew people of Delhi love me, but didn’t know they love me so much.”

Assuring people that his government will make Delhi “India’s first corruption-free state”, he said if somebody asks for bribe don’t refuse. “Setting ker lena (fix the deal) and video record it. Send the video footage to me. I will take action,” he said.

“Kejriwal will not hold any portfolio,” Manish Sisodia told the media shortly after the new AAP government was sworn in.

“He will oversee all ministries through modern technology. He will try to bring systemic changes.”Kejriwal will connect with the people, Sisodia said.

“He will meet people to know what their problems are. He will also oversee the MLAs,” he said.

Sisodia further said he will look after finance and planning, education, UD, revenue and any other department that is not allocated to any minister:

Satyendar Jain will take care of Power Ministry, health, industries, PWD and IFC while Asim Ahmed Khan will look after food and civil supply, environment and forest, and election departments

Jitender Singh Tomar will be in charge of law and justice, home, tourism, art and culture, he said.

Senior leader Gopal Rai will be in charge of transport, development, labor, general administration department and employment, Sisodia added.

Sandeep Kumar will be taking care of the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Social Welfare, SC/ST welfare, he added.

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After taking oath at the historic Ramlila Ground here, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday vowed to make Delhi corruption free in the five years of AAP’s rule.

Speaking to tens and thousands of party supporters at the Ramlila Maidan where he along with six others were sworn in, Kejriwal said: “I remember, during Anna (Hazare) agitation we asked for a corruption-free India. Even our opposition agreed that during our 49 days rule, we were able to end corruption in Delhi. ”

Now, we are much more confident. We will make Delhi India’s first corruption free state,” Kejriwal said to thunderous applause. Kejriwal asked members of his AAP not to become “arrogant” after the massive win in the Delhi assembly polls.

Addressing enthusiastic supporters, Kejriwal said: “The decision to fight polls across the country after winning 28 seats in the last assembly polls was a result of our arrogance. And we could see the results.”

Soon after taking oath as Chief Minister, Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday reached the Delhi Secretariat where he met senior officials and held discussions with his ministerial colleagues.

Ministers Manish Sisodia, Asim Ahmed Khan, Sandeep Kumar, Satyendar Jain, Gopal Rai and Jitender Singh Tomar also accompanied him.

Kejriwal had a meeting with all his ministers in his office and is believed to have discussed future strategy with them.

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Government officials welcomed Kejriwal and other ministers as they reached the Secretariat here. Immediately, after taking oath, the 46-year-old leader addressed the gathering at Ramlila Ground and unveiled the priorities of his government which included steps against corruption, communal elements, VIP culture and assured Delhiites that his government will fight for full statehood for the national capital.

Kejriwal said he wanted a constructive partnership with the central government and pitched for full statehood for the national capital.

“In every poll manifesto, the BJP had promised full statehood to Delhi and now that there is (a) BJP (government) at the centre and a majority AAP government in Delhi, I am hopeful that PM Modi will think about giving Delhi full statehood,” Kejriwal said, addressing thousands of enthusiastic Aam Aadmi Party supporters at the sprawling Ramlila Maidan where he took oath.

“I want to work with the central government, we want constructive cooperation to make Delhi a great place to live in,” he said.

“We will work with the Central government to make Delhi a top class city. We want constructive partnership with the centre,” Kejriwal added.

Kejriwal said that when he met Modi, he told him, “The PM has a lot of work on his hands. He has to look after the entire country and go abroad, I told him leave running Delhi to Delhi-walas,” he added.


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