By NewsGram Staff Writer
Thanks to its bitter conflicts with lieutenant governor Najeeb Jung, the AAP government’s much-fancied instrument to empower Delhiites and fight graft; the Anti-corruption helpline number 1031 has become a dud.
Anti-corruption bureau chief M K Meena on Wednesday attacked the AAP government for halting the routing of calls to the ACB for action.
Meena, who was appointed to the post by LG Najeeb Jung said, “If information is being suppressed, it is an offence. They should either shut down or handover the helpline to us if they are finding it difficult to run”, adding that the government was trying to make the ACB toothless.
The ACB is meant to act on public grievances regarding corruption and puts a rough estimate of around 50,000 calls which have gone unheard due to the non-transfer of calls from the vigilance to ACB.
In this regard, the ACB chief is learnt to have had meetings and sent written letters to the government.
Meena had earlier written a letter to the Delhi chief secretary criticising that the city government was not transferring complaints made to vigilance helpline 1031 to the anti-graft body, as is the norm.
“If the complaints are not brought to the knowledge of the anti-corruption branch, the public hoping for some action against the corrupt will suffer,” Meena is said to have communicated to the chief secretary.
As victims provided evidence via photographs, audio recordings and videos, many cases have been registered by the anti-corruption branch, with the helpline registering over 2 lakh complaints till date.
The 1031 helpline consists of over 60 lines and receives thousands of calls each day. Complaints have been registered extensively against municipal corporations, Delhi Jal Board, Delhi Fire Services, transport department. The Delhi Police has not been spared either in this regard.
Meanwhile, the state authorities have kept the call centre location secret. The complaints were being forwarded to the anti-corruption branch till a month ago.
On April 5, Delhi Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal had re-launched the helpline at a public gathering at Talkatora Stadium.
The present stalemate between Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Lieutenant governor Najeeb Jung is wreaking havoc on the everyday life of the citizens of Delhi.
While both the Centre and the Aam Aadmi Party raise boisterous slogans for wiping out corruption from politics, it is ironically shameful that their tussles for one-upmanship have rendered the anti-corruption bureau powerless, and precariously closer to becoming defunct.
Both the Centre, viz. Najeeb Jung and the state government need to rest their weapons and resolve their differences at the earliest. If the differences persist, a workable solution or a truce should be agreed upon so that the Aam Aadmi can finally breathe a sigh of relief.