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Arvind Kejriwal eyeing short term gains by giving water subsidy: Arun Jaitley

Wednesday, 1 January 2014 - 6:49pm IST | Agency: PTI
The Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha said the water subsidy has "completely ignored the weakest section of Delhi" and the poorest of Delhi have been kept out of the water subsidy scheme as they do not have piped water supply.

Attacking Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal over providing water subsidy in Delhi, BJP leader Arun Jaitley today said by doing so the AAP Government is looking at "short term gains" and creating debts for tomorrow while ignoring the weakest sections.

"The more you subsidise the more you will have to eventually raise the taxes. Through subsidisation a government thinks of the short term gains. It leaves a debt for tomorrow. A subsidy may prove counter productive for the more vulnerable sections," he said in an article.

The Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha said the water subsidy has "completely ignored the weakest section of Delhi" and the poorest of Delhi have been kept out of the water subsidy scheme as they do not have piped water supply.

He said localities without a pipeline, households without a tap and meter and houses with defective meters are not entitled to any subsidy.

Households in the NDMC area, particularly of lesser paid employees, and in Delhi Cantonment area have all been kept out of the water subsidy, he said.

"This subsidy ignores the weakest and includes a small layer of people with metered consumption," Jaitley said.

The BJP leader said subsidies are an unquantified amount given to unidentifiable section of people and through subsidies a government does not cut down the rates or the cost, but maintains the existing rates and tariffs and only uses the tax payers money to subsidise a section.

"The more you subsidise the more you will have to eventually raise the taxes," he said.

He said subsidies make the health of supply organisations vulnerable and the real challenge is that those outside the water supply system must be connected to it.

This he said, can be achieved through laying down pipelines in every locality and installation of taps in every house can only be provided by a healthy board and not a financially vulnerable DJB.

Jaitley said Delhi has about 18 lakh water connections, of which 8.5 lakh have functional meters and about 5 lakh meters are non functional or defective while the rest are un-metered.

"The scope of the benefit has narrowed down to just some of the households falling in one of the above four categories. And this category is not the most vulnerable section," he said.


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