AAP national convenor Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday told the newly-appointed ministers in Punjab in no uncertain terms to perform or be ready to be replaced and said those unhappy with missing out on ministerial berth need to leave behind personal ambitions for the states progress.
While he will be there “like an elder brother to guide” them, Kejriwal said the 92 MLAs have to work with honesty as a strong team under the leadership of Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann, whom he lauded for the decisions taken after assuming office.
“Every minister will be given a target by Mann sahab regarding works they have to do. They will have to work round-the-clock. If your (ministers) targets are not met, then the public will say change this minister, bring another minister… work has to be done and whatever target given by Mann Sahab has to be met, the Aam Aadmi Party chief said in his first address to party legislators through videoconferencing after the formation of the new government in Punjab.
Kejriwal also advised the MLAs to be polite and not to be rude or use objectionable language against anyone, including officials.
They would have to win the hearts of the people of Punjab with performance, the Delhi chief minister said and warned the party leaders of “strict action” if they indulge in any wrongdoing.
I can tolerate anything but not dishonesty and theft of public money. If I come to know or Mann sahib comes to know that anybody has indulged in wrongdoing, then not even a single chance will be given, he said, adding people have shown faith in us and we cannot break their trust.
Pointing out that political stalwarts of rival parties lost in the elections, Kejriwal said, ghamand mat karna (do not be arrogant). You did not defeat them. It is the people who defeated them.
Do not think I have become an MLA now and will become a minister and then CM. These things should not come into your mind, he said.
Kejriwal praised Mann for his decisions related to the announcement of 25,000 government jobs, withdrawal of security of former ministers and ex-MLAs and release of compensation for the damaged crops.
He claimed that while the AAP government is doing wonderful work in Punjab, the BJP, which won elections in four states, was still fighting over ministerial positions.
“In the last three days, Mann sahib, tussi kamaal kar ditta we are really proud of you,” said Kejriwal.
On Manns announcement of launching an anti-corruption helpline number, Kejriwal said, “I will call it the anti-corruption action line. We are getting so many messages on social media about the impact it has already started to make.” “Employment is a big issue in Punjab, said Kejriwal adding, You have made a grand beginning.
He urged all the AAP MLAs in Punjab to work with dedication, saying people have reposed their faith and now it is our responsibility to deliver goods.
Seventy years have been wasted so time is very less, he said while referring to the previous governments.
“We have to work with full honesty,” said Kejriwal as he reminded the MLAs that during the election campaign, he had said his party would give a fiercely honest government.
He praised Mann for telling his MLAs not to sit in Chandigarh and be among people, listen to their problems and resolve them.
Kejriwal said that he has heard that some MLAs who did not become ministers are unhappy. We won 92 seats and only 17 can become ministers. It is not that those MLAs who did not become ministers are any lesser. All our MLAs are jewels, he said.
All 92 of us have to work as a team and leave behind our personal ambitions and interests, then Punjab will progress and move ahead. But if these personal ambitions, greed come in the way then Punjab will lose. For Punjabs progress, it is important that all 92 work as a strong team under Bhagwant Mann, said Kejriwal.
I am there like an elder brother to guide you. But you will have to work as a team under the leadership of Bhagwant Mann. Everyone will be given responsibility, said Kejriwal.
Kejriwal also asked the legislators not to meet the CM or ministers for posting of officers.
You meet the CM and ministers if you want to get peoples work done, said Kejriwal, adding that they will appoint honest officers.
If any officer does not get the work of people done then you can lodge a complaint, he said. Without naming anyone, Kejriwal said he has seen a person telling a cop that he will hang him upside down.
He said that such language should not be used. We have to respect everyone, opponents, rivals and all employees, he said.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Federal staff and is auto-published from a syndicated feed.)