New Bottle Old Wine Kejriwal must remember his mandate is for change,not a repeat of UPAs subsidy raj AAP intensely dislikes being called Congresss B-team,arguing that it did after all win 28 seats to the latters eight in Delhi.True enough.People have unambiguously voted for change.But in its first week in power,AAP has unfortunately exhibited a more of the same avatar instead of a fresh take on governance.UPAs expansive welfarism has bust the fisc and shattered Indias growth story a profligacy thats also left all of us haplessly struggling against persistent inflation.Walking the same path AAP has already expanded subsidies for water and electricity dramatically,and talk of CNG sops is also heavy in the air. Consider the alternative that AAP could have proposed.Its estimated that 40-50 % of the water in Indias urban distribution system is lost.Groundwater recharge is neglected.Many households are yet to be metered.In Delhi around 20% of households are yet to be linked to the water grid,and remain at the water mafias mercy irrespective of whether tariffs go up or down.Tackling leakages and improving infrastructure is much tougher than doling out sops.But this is exactly the kind of improvement that voters expect from a party thats ridden to power by decrying Congresss in-thename-of-the-poor policies as being in bad faith. AAP aims to go national.Power shortages across the country are costing growth,jobs,social advancement.Its well and good to audit discoms accounts,but pending that review AAP should focus on plans to improve supply and competition.Think big instead of echoing bad ideas.The biggest mistake UPA-II made was to misread the mandate of 2009.AAP mustnt repeat that mistake,especially when recent assembly election results have made it clear that people are no longer in thrall to populism,but demand better leadership and governance instead. http://mobiletoi.timesofindia.com/m...galore&edname=&articleid=Ar01005&publabel=TOI ********************************************* Kejriwal has shown dynamism by 'fulfilling' his major promises to the people of Delhi in just about four days of taking charge. However, has he? Everyone loves policies that reduces the burden on the people. However, people are also aware that subsidised relief in the long run is actually at the cost of development and ensuring implementation of other social needs through legitimate means. The free water and cut of [email protected] cost of electricity is welcomed, but it it is at the cost of subsidising the 'relief' through the exchequer, then it smacks of populism that the UPA is legend about, and in the long run detrimental to the well being of the city and its governance. The euphoria generated by the 'Kjeriwal phenomenon' that the AAP heralds a 'new dawn' may initially cloud the reality from the citizens of Delhi or even the Nation, but as time goes by, it will be realised that this so called dynamism is nothing but the Congress policy of subsidy populism that has always been in vogue and which has brought the Nation to its knees and the sorry state. Let us just look at the free water policy and see if it a truism or a populist fudge. The Delhi Jal Board in 2012-13 profit was Rs 466 crore, and this is where the cost of providing free water would come from is being stated. But it must be remembered that these are the very profits which should be used to enhance and modernise the water distribution system so as to reach the out 20 per cent of Delhi households, around 7 lakh, who do not have any piped water connection. It is also felt that the top 60 per cent of households should pay a higher rate of the water consumed in order to finance the water consumption of the bottom 40 per cent. But is that fair? Is it a crime to be better off than others in this country and is it a matter of National Pride to remain poor? Warped logic at best! Delhi is not only a specific area. There are localities without a pipeline, households without a tap, households without a meter, households with defective meters and they would not be entitled to the any subsidy. Also, the households in the NDMC area, particularly of those lesser paid employees, households in Delhi Cantonment area are all who have been kept out of the water subsidy And the voted in the Election, therefore why should they also not have a cut of the bonanza? Delhi has about 18 lakh water connections. Of these 8.5 lakh have functional meters. About 5 lakh meters are non functional or defective. The rest are un-metered. A very large number of jhuggis in Delhi have no water connection and are not covered by the free water scheme. They are reliant only on tankers. A very large number of unauthorized colonies have no pipelines and are yet to be covered by laying of water pipelines. In short. Delhi thus gets divided into four categories. The first is those who have no taps or pipeline connections. They are outside the scheme. Those with defective or no meters would also be outside the scheme and paying for water. It is only those with functional meters and consuming below 20 kilo litres per month who get the benefit. The others with functional meters who consume above 20 kilo litres would pay 10% extra, Therefore, it appears that this policy has not been thought over and is merely a political and populist fudge.