Arvind Kejriwal's ploy pays off, overwhelming response to anti-graft helpline

Written by PTI | New Delhi | Updated: Jan 10 2014, 07:17am hrs
Arvind Kejriwal AAPAAP's anti-graft helpline has had a busy start, with nearly 4500 calls already.
Nearly 4,500 calls were received on Thursday by the helpline introduced by the Aam Aadmi Party government to take complaints of corruption against officials in various departments and agencies on the first day of its operation.

As the helpline 011 27357169 was flooded with calls, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal ordered increasing the number of helpline staff from current 15 officials to 30 by Friday.

The Chief Minister also announced that the entire cabinet will sit in front of the Delhi Secretariat from 9:30 AM to 11 AM on Saturdays to receive grievances from people and efforts will be made to solve them immediately.

On weekdays, one minister will receive grievances from the public.

Launching of the helpline was the third major initiative of the AAP government after subsidising power tariffs and making 20 kilo-litres of water free monthly.

The Chief Minister, who is personally monitoring the operation of the helpline, said out of these calls, 53 callers were found to be having serious complaints out of which 38 have agreed to do a sting operation.

Officials said if a complaint is considered serious, a team of anti-corruption sleuths would help the complainant on how to conduct a sting operation to trap the accused and collect the "first evidence". The government's vigilance team after receiving evidence will pursue each case within 24 hours.

Kejriwal said a four digit number will be made available in a couple of days as the helpline number so that people can easily remember it.

"The response to the helpline has been tremendous. There was huge traffic on the number," the Chief Minister said, adding only 824 calls could be attended out of around 4,000 calls till 3 PM.

"I want to congratulate people for proving to be very good anti-corruption inspector. They have done a good job. If citizens of Delhi get together they can create fear in the mind of officials. They are many officials who are honest. We have to identify the rotten fish," he said.

Kejriwal said addressing public grivances was one of the top priorities of his government.

"Public grievance is another major issue. It is a major issue for any government. It is the duty of every government to resolve those grievances. Public grievance is just a symptom, disease lies somewhere else," Kejriwal said.