‘No roll-out of free WiFi in Delhi’: Body blow to Arvind Kejriwal’s free wi-fi promise; here’s what PWD said

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New Delhi | Published: April 30, 2018 10:32:58 AM

In run-up to the assembly elections in 2015, the Aam Aadmi Party had promised to provide free wi-fi access to the people at public places. The scheme had gained huge popularity among youngsters of the city.

Free wifi, Delhi government, Aam Aadmi Party, Arvind Kejriwal, AAP government, Kejriwal government, PWD department, Free wifi in Delhi, Manish Sisodia, Delhi budget‘No roll-out of free WiFi in Delhi’: Body blow to Arvind Kejriwal’s free wi-fi promise; here’s what PWD said

Three years after the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) led by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal swept to power in Delhi, a key promise it made in the run-up to polls may just have received a death blow. Kejriwal’s plan to provide free wi-fi to the residents of Delhi remains unfulfilled and if reports are to be believed, it may have hit a dead end. According to a report in Hindustan Times, the PWD department, which was tasked with the responsibility of carrying out the project has now expressed its unwillingness to carry out the project, citing challenges in delivery. The PWD now wants that the responsibility for the roll out of the plan be handed over to the Information and Technology department.

The HT report cited senior PWD department officials as saying that no government department is prepared to execute the plan, adding that the office in-charge of the project has written a letter to the PWD’s engineer-in-chief stating that the department lacks expertise to roll out the government’s plan. The PWD has said that the Information and Technology department should look into the execution plan of the project instead.

The Arvind Kejriwal government had allocated Rs 100 crore for the scheme in the Delhi budget this year. Deputy CM Manish Sisodia had said that the project was earlier with the IT department but now has been transferred to the PWD.

In run-up to the assembly elections in 2015, the Aam Aadmi Party had promised to provide free wi-fi access to the people at public places. The scheme had gained huge popularity among youngsters of the city.

After winning the elections, the government had assigned the Dialogue and Development Commission of Delhi (DDCD) to roll out the project. The DDCD had in March 2016 installed wi-fi facility at Sant Nagar market in north Delhi on a pilot basis. But since no progress was made thereafter, the government handed over the project to the IT department.

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