Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday took oath as the chief minister of Delhi for the third straight term. Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal administered the oath at an event at Ramlila Maidan.
The AAP had won a resounding victory in the Assembly elections on February 11, securing 62 of 70 seats, just five fewer than its 2015 tally. The Bharatiya Janata Party gained five seats to secure eight – way below what exit polls had predicted. The Congress once again failed to open its account.
The chief minister dedicated his election victory to the people of Delhi, ANI reported. “Today your son has taken oath for the third time,” he said. “This is not my victory, this is a victory for the people of Delhi, every family, every mother, every student. In the last five years, we have been trying hard to bring happiness, relief in the lives of people of Delhi. For the next years, we will continue to make similar efforts.”
Kejriwal added he would work for everyone irrespective of whether they voted for the AAP or not. “I am chief minister for AAP, BJP, Congress, every other party workers,” he added. “I have never discriminated against anyone in the last five years.”
The AAP chief said he would forgive and forget opponents for their provocative remarks about him in the run-up to the elections, The Indian Express reported. “I forgive all those who spoke ill of me during the election campaign,” he added. “Delhiites have given birth to a new kind of politics in the country – which involves schools, hospitals, electricity, water, good roads and women security.”
He also sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s blessings for a smooth tenure. Modi had been invited to the event by Kejriwal, but he did not attend since he is in his Lok Sabha constituency Varanasi to inaugurate projects.
Six ministers take oath
Kejriwal retained all the six ministers who served in his government in the previous term – Manish Sisodia, Satyendar Jain, Imran Hussain, Gopal Rai, Rajendra Gautam and Kailash Gehlot. “There is nothing wrong if Arvind Kejriwal ji thinks that the same Cabinet should be repeated,” Sisodia told ANI before the swearing-in ceremony. “People are happy with the work of the Cabinet and we won the elections on basis of our work. We will continue to build and maintain the confidence of the people.”
Kejriwal’s new Cabinet does not include women even though eight women from his party were elected legislators.
Fifty representatives from different sectors – school peons, Mohalla clinic doctors, autorickshaw, bus and ambulance drivers, sanitation workers, and teachers – shared the stage with the chief minister at the event. The AAP called them the “makers of Delhi”.