Delhi sealing issue: CM Arvind Kejriwal threatens hunger strike

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has said an ordinance brought by the central government is the “only possible solution” to the ongoing Supreme Court-monitored sealing drive in the capital

Photo by Sushil Kumar/Hindustan Times via Getty Images
Photo by Sushil Kumar/Hindustan Times via Getty Images


Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Friday that he would go on a hunger strike if the issue of the ongoing sealing drive in the national capital is not resolved by the central government by March 31, while addressing a group of traders at Lajpat Nagar in south Delhi.

The sealing drive is being carried out by a Supreme Court-appointed Monitoring Committee against business establishments using residential properties for commercial purposes, and it is being implemented by the three BJP-led Municipal Corporations of Delhi (MCDs). The committee was set up by the Supreme Court in 2006. In 2012, the apex court asked the committee to stop the drive. But in December 2017 it ordered resumption of the drive.

The Chief Minister said he had met many traders and spoken to them about the issue. "A change is necessary in the master plan, many laws need to be changed. The proposed amendments made by the DDA were rejected by the Supreme Court. Ordinance is the only possible solution to the sealing drive," he said.

Kejriwal said that on Saturday he would write to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and urge him to inquire into the ongoing sealing. The Chief Minister also said he would meet Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri next week on the issue.

He said the AAP government will also pass a resolution requesting an ordinance in the Delhi Assembly's budget session, which is set to start from March 16.

Meanwhile AAP MLA and chief spokesperson Saurabh Bharadwaj told the media "The BJP is not serious about finding a solution to the sealing drive. It is because of their carelessness that the people and businessmen of Delhi are in trouble. We have been saying that there is only one solution to sealing and that lies with the Centre—ordinance..., only ordinance," he stressed.

Bharadwaj said shops were sealed in Defence Colony market after the resumption of the drive. "Then also, we said it is a conspiracy to embezzle money. The businessmen are being fooled.

"From (BJP leader) Vijay Goel to (Delhi BJP chief) Manoj Tiwari to (Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs) Hardeep Puri, they all have been cheating the traders by making false promises of ridding them of sealing. They haven't been able to do anything, neither will they."

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