‘No corruption please... but you must fix my illegal colony’

Even as he targeted the Congress, NCP leader Sharad Pawar on Monday took aim at Delhi voters and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). In a blog entry on the website www.beingsharadpawar.com, he called Delhi a 'pampered' state because it received special treatment and said those who lived in 'illegal colonies' voted for the AAP, which promised a corruption-free Delhi.

The blog reads, "As compared to all states in the country, Delhi gets the largest share of per capita investment on projects that are funded by the Centre. A number of services are funded and managed by the Centre, for instance, the All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS). The Centre spends on creating infrastructure for many national and international events in Delhi. All benefit Delhi citizens."

"So there is a whole class of people who are used to such benefits. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) had campaigned, promising a corruption-free Delhi. But the same class of people who built the illegal colonies wants them to be legalised. On one hand, the same class of people are responding and voting for AAP's call for a corruption-free Delhi and, on the other hand, they are demanding that their illegal colonies be legalised. You will find such contradictions in Delhi," he said.

According to the NCP chief, the December 16 gangrape incident had made the youth restless and thus most of them joined AAP. The upper middle class that normally abstains from voting has also voted this time. But the poor and lower class proved to be a bigger vote bank for AAP. They believed the broom (AAP's symbol) needs to be given a chance.

"What was Arvind Kejriwal telling these poor and middle class people? Their campaign was about bringing down the prices of onions, vegetables and electricity rates, once they come to power. He promised that he would bring onion prices to half if voted to power. This is easier said than done," said Pawar, explaining that states cannot control these prices as they depend on demand and supply, which largely depends on situations such as drought, availability of water etc.

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