NEW DELHI: Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and three Cabinet colleagues spent their second consecutive night in the Raj Niwas waiting room where they have been on dharna since Monday evening in a protest unprecedented in the democratic history of the country.
“We are ready for any struggle for the rights of the people of Delhi and the development of Delhi,” Kejriwal tweeted. Sources in AAP said the dharna by Kejriwal, deputy CM Manish Sisodia, home minister Satyendar Jain and labour minister Gopal Rai was likely to be a prolonged affair.
The waiting room has no sleeping arrangements. The four of them pass the night stretched out on sofas and use the waiting room toilet. Food, pillows and blankets are supplied from home as is Kejriwal’s insulin for diabetes. They get tea from Raj Niwas, said sources.
What’s stopping LG from meeting demands: AAP
There are two waiting rooms with sofas and two of them retire to one waiting room at night, sources said.
There was no interaction between the LG and the CM or his Cabinet colleagues on Tuesday since the LG had some engagements outside Raj Niwas and did not go to his office (in Raj Niwas). The four sat on dharna after a meeting with the LG where their demands were not met.
The four of them dug in their heels on Tuesday and, adding to the political drama, Satyendra Jain went on indefinite fast in support of their three demands — one, direct all IAS officers to end their four-month-long “strike”; two, initiate proceedings against those on “strike”; and three, approve the scheme for doorstep delivery of rations.
The dharna is likely to continue as Kejriwal has refused to relent and there has been no fresh response from LG Baijal to their demands.
On Tuesday night, Kejriwal took to Twitter to say he would be spending a second consecutive night at the LG’s house. “Our second night at LG House. We are here because we love Delhi and care for Delhi, we have worked hard for Delhi, we want Delhi to further improve, we feel shattered because many great initiatives are getting stuck,” he tweeted. On Tuesday morning, Kejriwal released a video to say “there was no option but to stage a dharna at LG office because the LG was not paying attention to the government’s demands even after multiple requests”.
“We are not doing it for ourselves but for the people of Delhi so that their work does not get affected,” Kejriwal said in the video.