The national capital, Delhi, is currently grappling with a dire air pollution crisis, and it has ignited a political debate. Union Minister Anurag Thakur has taken the Arvind Kejriwal government to task, highlighting the deteriorating air quality and pointing to unfulfilled promises.
In a press conference held in Bhopal, the capital of Madhya Pradesh, Thakur questioned the Delhi Chief Minister’s commitment to addressing the pollution issue. He pointed out that Kejriwal had made grand claims and promised significant measures to combat air pollution, such as the installation of three smog towers. However, Thakur revealed that these smog towers have remained non-operational for the past six months. He emphasized the need for transparency regarding the effectiveness of these initiatives and suggested that the people of the country deserve to know if these efforts had been fruitful or were merely a facade.
Thakur did not stop at questioning the Delhi government’s efforts but also drew attention to the complex nature of responsibility for the pollution crisis. With both the Aam Aadmi Party in power in Delhi and Punjab, he questioned which government could guarantee an end to pollution. Thakur suggested that Arvind Kejriwal’s credibility has been tarnished, asserting that the politics he once practised with grandiose claims has now led to the entire city of Delhi being engulfed in a hazardous gas chamber.
Shifting his focus, Thakur touted the BJP’s record in Madhya Pradesh, where initiatives like “Ladli Lakshmi” and “Ladli Brahmin” have been introduced to respect and empower women and daughters. He contrasted this with the situation in Rajasthan, where women have allegedly faced insult and mistreatment. Thakur argued that under BJP rule in Madhya Pradesh, women’s rights are upheld, while in Rajasthan, they face atrocities.
The Union Minister didn’t reserve his criticism solely for the AAP-led Delhi government but also targeted Congress governments in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan. Thakur accused the Congress of being embroiled in serious allegations of corruption, leading to investigations into Congress Chief Ministers and leaders. In Rajasthan, an alarming discovery was made when Rs 2.25 crore in cash and one kilogram of gold were seized from an officer within the Chief Minister’s department in the Secretariat. Additionally, Thakur highlighted allegations of scams worth thousands of crores in the Gehlot government, particularly related to the Jal Jeevan Mission. He concluded by suggesting that looting appeared to have free rein in Rajasthan, with Congress leaders under scrutiny in Chhattisgarh.
The air quality crisis in Delhi not only raises health and environmental concerns but also serves as a battleground for political finger-pointing and allegations. As the situation in the capital remains dire, it remains to be seen how these political tensions will affect the response to the ongoing pollution problem.