Arvind Kejriwal became the Chief Minister of Delhi for the first time in 2013. His government lasted only 49 days. Later, he became the Chief Minister again in 2015.
Essentially, his first stint as CM was from December 2013 to February 2014. His second stint, that is ongoing, has been from February 2015. Hence, 2015-16 is the year from which Kejriwal’s regime well and truly began in Delhi – this will be useful to remember in many of the facts you will read below.
Has Arvind Kejriwal stood by the promises he made? Has Delhi’s condition become better? Let us delve into the facts, leaving to you to review the man’s performance.
Number of educational institutions in Delhi
An impressive growth of almost 12 per cent was seen in the number of educational institutions between 2012-13 and 2014-2015. However, post-Kejriwal, there has been a decline in the number of educational institutions in Delhi. Education is one of the marquee accomplishments that the Kejriwal regime tries to showcase, but this decline doesn’t augur well.
Pass percentages in Class 10 CBSE
It is well known that Delhi’s pass percentages in Class 10 CBSE exams are on a steep decline.
In 2013, it was 98.40%. By 2018, this had plummeted to 78.62%.
More worrisome are the numbers for Delhi’s government schools. The pass percentage which had never gone below 89% since 2010, plummeted to 69.32% for the first time in 2018!
Enrolment of students in primary schools
Coming to enrolment of students in primary schools, it was increasing at the rate of around 2.39 per cent between 2013-14 and 2014-15 and this continued to rise in AAP government’s first year at a slower rate of 0.61 per cent and total enrolment reached 18,86,974 in 2015-16. However, a sharp decline in enrolment was seen after the first year of AAP government.
Enrolment of SC students in educational institutions
The number of SC students is a key metric to know if education is reaching a wider cross section of people, especially underprivileged sections of society. In Delhi, it is on a declining trajectory. Scheduled Caste student numbers declined at the rate of 1.22 per cent between 2013-14 and 2014-15 whereas under the AAP government this rate of decline has increased to 1.30 per cent between 2015-16 and 2016-17. Especially concerning is the decline in the number of girls from the SC section of society from 39,625 in 2014-15 (before Kejriwal) to 32,714 in 2016-17. Not only has the AAP government failed to arrest the decline in number of SC students in educational institutions, but it has also presided over a slightly steeper decline.
Enrolment of students in senior secondary schools
The number of students in senior secondary schools is declining too. Yet again, the AAP government has failed to arrest the decline. Incidentally, while enrolment in senior secondary school drops, in the same period, the National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB) report observed that “Maximum number of cases under juveniles in conflict with law were reported in Delhi (35.6%) followed by Mumbai (14.2%) and Pune (11.3%) during 2016.” Delhi is ranked 1 based on Incidence/ percentage share in 2016.
Health & Family Welfare
In the Budget of 2015, the Delhi Government announced “It is planned to remodel and upgrade 11 existing hospitals which will add 4000 more beds in next two years.” But a mere 590 beds could be added until 31.12.2016. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal reportedly said, “We will add as many beds to Delhi’s hospitals as there have been over the last 65 years.”
Considering the delivery record of a mere 590 against the 4000 that was planned in the first 2 years, delivering as much capacity in Delhi as added in last 65 years looks far beyond the reach of Delhi government.
Arvind Kejriwal has repeatedly promised setting up of 1000 mohalla clinics in Delhi on different occasions. But, going by the above table that shows AAP government’s own figures, the Delhi government has operationalised only 183 mohalla clinics despite the announcement of 500 such clinics in the first year itself and a hike in the health budget, ostensibly for the same purpose.
Further, as per several reports, Delhi’s mohalla clinics have run into complete chaos facing issues from land for new clinics to maintenance of existing ones.
Let us hear about the state of Mohalla clinics in the words of AAP leaders themselves, from August 2017.
AAP MLA Mohindar Goyal reportedly said that clinics opened in the second phase did not have the facility for tests despite such facilities being promised by the health department. To this, the usual bogey of the blaming the Lieutenant Governor was resorted to by the concerned minister.
However, Sahi Ram, AAP MLA from Tughlaqabad, reportedly said that despite the concerned minister’s assurances, several clinics lacked services like drinking water and toilets. Surely, providing drinking water at already operationalised clinics does not need the LG’s approval?
The number of maternal deaths in Delhi was around 399 in 2014-15. It rose to 442 in 2015-16 and reached as high as 508 in 2016-17. This is a growth of approximately 27 per cent in 2 years.
According to annual report on registration of births and deaths in Delhi, 2016, the maternal mortality rate (MMR) per thousand live births increased by 10.81% from 0.37 in 2015 to 0.41 in 2016. This shows the worsening state of institutional deliveries and other factors that lead to maternal deaths in Delhi.
Pregnant Women Counseled About Infant Young Child Feeding
The number of pregnant women counselled about infant young child feeding is continuously declining and the AAP government did not reverse the trend. It further declined by about 12.7 per cent after 2015-16. It is a widely known fact that an infant’s health depends on this important factor and proper counselling of pregnant women is required.
Deaths due to dysentery and diarrhoea
Note – Medically certified or otherwise
The number of deaths due to dysentery and diarrhoea, in Delhi, was 150 in the year preceding Kejriwal’s regime and was an even lower 97 in the year preceding that. It shot up to 208 in 2016, which is more than double the number of 2013. Both diseases are caused by several factors including contaminated drinking water. This is perhaps a reflection of the worsening quality of drinking water in Delhi.
Deaths due to respiratory diseases
Note – Medically certified or otherwise
Delhi’s worsening air quality is widely known and it is reflected in the number of deaths due to respiratory diseases. While the number of such deaths decreased from 2013 to 2014, it has shot up after Kejriwal came into the picture in 2015. Between 2014 and 2016, there was a whopping 65.86% increase in the number of deaths due to respiratory diseases.
However, the AAP government is content with publicity gimmicks such as the completely failed Odd-Even policy without doing anything substantive to better Delhi’s situation.
New power connections in Delhi are rising fast as can be seen from the graph above reflecting an increase in the number of electricity consumers on a y-o-y basis. In fact, in the summer of 2018, Delhi’s peak power demand breached 7000 MW which shows the rising need for electricity in Delhi, especially during peak hours. This has resulted in load shedding in some areas as the administration was not fully equipped to meet the demand.
The Kejriwal government does not seem to have long term plans to address this problem either as the picture of electricity generation and distribution shows.
Note – Include Long-Term Purchases from & outside Delhi
There is a decrease in the units of electricity generated and purchased between 2015-16 and 2016-17. This is despite the fact that local consumption of electricity in Delhi is continuously increasing. There is also a steep decline in the local generation of electricity from 5,941 Mn units in 2015-16 to 4,014 Mn Units in 2016-17. Despite the AAP government’s promise of setting up Delhi’s own power plant, it is nowhere to be seen.
The Promise of Clean Politics
AAP came to electoral politics promising ‘clean politics’. Let us see what is the track record of the government on this front. As per the report of the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), a civil society body in India, 23 out of 67 AAP MLAs have criminal cases registered against them.
AAP, in its manifesto, promised to add 5000 new buses to city fleet in the next five years and in its first budget increased this figure to 10,000 buses in the next five years. Let’s see what happened to this promise.
Reportedly, the Delhi government’s transport minister himself said that there was not a single bus added by the government in its first two years of tenure. The Minister, in a reply to a question asked in the assembly said, “There is no proposal to buy buses. But under the Cluster Scheme, plan is being made to run new buses.”
Public transport in Delhi is under serious resource crunch as the population pressure on Delhi is continuously increasing and if migration into Delhi is also factored in, government transporter is severely ailing and needs immediate attention.
Public Distribution System
AAP’s manifesto promised a transparent government in order to deliver its 70 points plan. CAG in its report found irregularities in the public distribution system of Delhi which we have already explained very exhaustively in one of our previous articles.
Read here – Is there a Ration Scam in Delhi?
AAP government promised reduction in pollution in its manifesto and it launched the famous Odd-Even policy in two phases in January and April 2016 to ostensibly check the rising pollution in the city.
But, this experiment failed miserably as per a study conducted by IIT Kanpur published in journal Environmental Science and Policy. On the level of pollutant PM 2.5, Study noted only a marginal reduction of 8-9 per cent in some areas and of around mere 2-3 per cent in larger parts of the capital.
Thus, policy of Odd-Even was not only wrongly mooted as panacea to the problem of pollution in Delhi, but was also poorly planned and disastrously implemented causing unnecessary problems to the people of Delhi without gaining anything in return.
Education and Health have negative trends on many parameters as pointed out above. Local electricity generation remains an area where the government has not done anything. Mohalla clinics despite much publicity in media have not really taken off. In fact, less than one-fifth of what was originally promised has become functional so far. Further, the Chief Minister of Delhi talks about clean politics but conveniently forgets the fact that his own party’s 33 per cent MLAs have criminal cases. Public transport continues to face huge resource crunch. ‘Honesty’ is probably the most frequently used word by Arvind Kejriwal but CAG report pointed out irregularities in Delhi’s PDS which rebel AAP MLA Kapil Mishra called a scam of Rs. 5400 crores.
In sum, Delhi, in various important parameters, seems demonstrably worse off post-Kejriwal than before him.