Aam Aadmi Party got a historic mandate in recent Delhi elections securing 67 out of 70 seats. The party was often criticized for its policies of free water and subsidised electricity.
Let us examine for what the Aam Aadmi party stands for what the new government have done to achieve the same.
Aam Aadmi Party believes that access to quality water is a basic right. It is the duty of the government to provide its citizens basic amenities like lifeline water. We want to emphasize that water is essential for sustaining life/ living a dignified life. A lot of contagious diseases are spread through water. If all citizens are not provided safe drinking water, consequences can be huge. Epidemics can cause a government thousands of crores. If people are not provided at least lifeline drinking water, those who cannot afford will steal it or use unsafe water.
Counter arguments for the free water policy are:
1. This policy will cause wastage of water.
The promise is not unlimited free water, but it is capped at 20kL/month. This comes to an average of 660L per day for a family. Delhi government consider this as a bare minimum. At least this much water is needed for living a dignified life.
Even if a single litre is used beyond the limit of 20kL, full amount have to be paid. This promotes conservation. If a family is 22kL per month, they can save 100% of their bill by saving 10% of their usage.
2. This policy is bad economics.
The cost of provoding free water for one year is around Rs.250 Cr per year. This is less than 1% of annual budget of elhi government. If such a policy can provide a basic need for the citizens, improve health and above all promote conservation of water, it money spent well.
3. Poorest of the poor are not benefitted as they don’t have piped water connection
Poorest of the poor lives in slums and unauthorised colonies. They are given water by means of water tankers.
We see huge uproar against the statement of Nestle CEO that drinking water is not a basic right and should be privitized. This earth is mother to all living beings. Mother earth blessed us with adequate water. Atleast lifeline water should not be taxed upto a certain extend. What is the cost of a litre water? Ten rupees? Hundred rupees? Thousand rupees? No amount of money will not be enough pay for water. It is priceless.
67 MLAs of the Aam Aadmi Party conducted small mohalla Sabhas to list the problems faced by the people and subsequent actions were taken. Water pipelines were laid to colonies facing water scarcity. Faulty meters were replaced in a timely manner.
Delhi faces a shortage of water. Several measured was taken to solve this problem. Government is planning to create 4 lakes for rain water harvesting which will provide water throughout the year to Delhi.
Delhi government also envisions to implement Singapore model of water reuse.
If successfully implemented, Delhi will never face water problems again. Implementation of such a system will also save Delhi Jal Board(DJB) Rs.150 Cr annually.
Aam Aadmi party categorically said that they are not against high electricity prices, but against the corruption behind high electricity prices. Aam Aadmi Party said that subsidy for reducing electricity prices is only a temporary solution. Delhi government ordered CAG audit of discoms and it is expected that discrepancy will be revealed and electricity prices will automatically come down.
Aam Aadmi party have a vision to continuously provide affordable electricity to delhi. Delhi government plans to procure a coal block and set up a power plant.
Electricty from such a plant can be very cheap @less than Rs.2. For example Delhi gets 660MW electricity from Sasan Coal power plant at a rate of Rs.1.17.
Last year Delhi saw massive power cuts up to 17 hours a day. The distribution system was in shambles and was not able to handle the increased load of summers. http://indianexpress.com/article/cities/delhi/panel-cracks-whip-on-discoms-there-should-be-no-power-cuts-this-summer/
No overloading of transformers and smooth operation of entire transmission network was made sure. Access to 24 hr affordable electricity is very important for the fast paced growth. AAP will ensure there would not be an energy crisis in the city during peak load times of the summer and in the future.