Govt to push for full statehood for Delhi: LG

The government will "dismantle" the barrier that has come up between the "elected and the electors" and will push for full statehood for Delhi, Lt Governor Najeeb Jung said on Tuesday.

New Delhi: The government will "dismantle" the barrier that has come up between the "elected and the electors" and will push for full statehood for Delhi, Lt Governor Najeeb Jung said on Tuesday.

Emphasising on development and well-being of every citizen, Jung said the government will bring the Jan Lokpal and Swaraj Bills and focus on security of women and ensure that they feel safe in the national capital.

Pushing for full statehood for Delhi, Jung said the provisions for essential services like the law and order and affordable housing can happen only if agencies like the Delhi Police, MCD and the DDA are brought under the control of the state government.

"It is the intention of my government to push for full statehood for Delhi, which has been a long-standing demand of the people of Delhi.

"The provision of critical public services such as law and order and low-cost housing would happen more smoothly if Delhi were accorded autonomy as a full-fledged state with greater control over these aspects," Jung said in his address to the first session of the Sixth Legislative Assembly of Delhi.

Assuring protection to whistleblowers, the Lt Governor said that it will make every effort to establish Jan Lokpal for time bound investigation in corruption cases and bring in the Swaraj Act so that locals can have a say on issues affecting their daily lives.

"My government shall endeavour to be transparent, participative and interactive. We will make every effort to establish the Jan Lokpal in Delhi to ensure a time-bound investigation in corruption cases. Whistleblowers shall be provided protection from harassment.

"In a major move toward devolution of power to the people, my government shall seek to legislate the Swaraj Act so as to enable the local communities to have a say on issues affecting their daily lives. For this purpose a Citizen Local Area Development (C-LAD) Fund will be provided to local communities."

Speaking about the mandate the government has got, Jung said it carries the dreams and aspirations of young and old, rich and poor, men and women, regardless of caste, creed or religion.

"They (people) want good governance that emerges out of clean politics and to achieve this they have shown their eagerness to engage with the political process. My government intends to deepen and strengthen our democracy by involving people in issues that affect them on a daily basis.

"My government will dismantle the barriers that have come up between the elected and the electors," Jung said.

Highlighting the issue of security of women, Jung said the government will ensure last mile connectivity in the public transit system and also set up fast track courts to ensure speedy justice.

"Government will not let any fund crunch come in the way of putting in place safety and security measures for women. As regards mobility, my government will exert itself to provide effective last mile connectivity in Delhi's public transit system to ensure that its women are able to travel safely and securely.

"To ensure speedy justice, my government will create fast-track courts dedicated to handling cases of sexual assault and other crimes against women. Government will facilitate appointment of new judges to ensure that the judicial system works fast and effectively," Jung said.

He said that the government will create a Mahila Suraksha Dal by redeploying members of the Home Guard and Civil Defense Volunteers.

Jung said, just like last time, the government will also lower tariffs of electricity and water and will also pay special attention to the colonies, which have been deprived of the services.

"Government will be responsive to the need for lowering the crushing burden of accessing basic public utilities such as power and water. The policies framed will not only benefit those who already have access to these facilities, they will pay special heed to colonies that have been deprived of formal electricity and water connections," he said.

Jung said that the government will do a resource audit in the areas of public services in order to effectively deal with these services. He said Delhi has enough resources to transform the capital into a modern and prosperous capital.

"This financial year Delhi has a total budget of around Rs 37,000 crore which, if used optimally, can truly create a new blueprint of development. It is not a paucity of funds that has kept the citizens bereft of basic public services.

"The crucial question is this: how effectively are those services being delivered on the ground to the very poor. My government will rigorously do a resource audit whether it is in the area of providing electricity or water or other public services," the Lt Governor said.

Jung said the government wants to make Delhi a Digital Capital and plans to create Wi-Fi hotspots at various locations across the city, which can help provide an impetus to education, entreprenuership, business and employment.

He added that the government also intends to focus on strengthening and expanding educational and health infrastructure.

"It will build new schools with a special focus on secondary and senior secondary schools to ensure that every child in Delhi has easy access to quality education. We will endeavour to streamline the nursery admission process, minimizing avenues of corruption.

"In the sector of Higher Education my government will make every effort to formulate schemes where every youth can pursue a diploma or degree course regardless of his or her financial status.

"We will build new colleges under Delhi administration in partnership with the people of Delhi. The existing seat capacity of Delhi government administered colleges will be enhanced, including at Delhi's flagship university, the Ambedkar University," Jung said.

He said that the government will build new Primary Health Care Centres (PHCs) and add new beds to Delhi hospitals, especially in maternity wards.

"Quality drugs will be provided at an affordable price -- pharmaceutical drug and equipment procurement will be centralized to cut out corruption," the Lt Governor said.

Jung said that the government will also work to create job opportunities in the next five years and create an enviornment for innovative and private start-up accelerators to provide support to entreprenuers.

"The focus will be on creating an ecosystem that enables private industry to create more jobs. In line with this idea, my government will encourage startups by setting up business and technology incubators in universities and colleges. Delhi government will also create affordable business incubation space," Jung said.

The new government will also put an end to inspector Raj and discourage raids on traders and create a new bond of trust between them and the government.

"Historically, Delhi has been a city of flourishing trade and my government is committed to making it a trade and retail hub once again by creating a friendly tax environment for traders. The government is firm on its commitment to insulate Delhi's traders from the inspector raj.

"We want to create a policy framework where every businessman and businesswoman in the country would like to come to Delhi to establish new enterprises," Jung said.

Giving important priority, the Lt Governor said, the rural part of Delhi for years had become an "island of neglect" and the government will ensure that it will take steps to esnure that people living in these spaces are able to partake the fruits of growth.

"Decisions regarding the development of Delhi's villages will be taken with their consent. The sectors of agriculture and animal husbandry will receive incentives and infrastructural support.

"We shall seek to provide sports facilities in villages to encourage young adults to pursue sports. Connectivity to rural Delhi will be enhanced through increased bus and metro services," he said.

Highlighting the issue of unauthorised colonies, Jung said, the government will also take a more "realistic and effective approach" to the regularise these colonies in Delhi and transform them to bring within the ambit of Delhi as a global and modern capital.

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