New Delhi, November 12
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal today launched a WhatsApp number (72779727799), asking for financial support from the people to pay yoga teachers. This decision aims to keep the government’s ambitious “Dilli Ki Yogshala” program afloat in addition to reaping political dividends.
The government’s AAP agenda has recently become a flashpoint between it and the Lieutenant Governor (LG). “There is an idiom — Marne wale se achcha bachane wala hai. LG sahab and BJP are shooting arrows at the people of Delhi by stopping all good works, initiatives and plans. One of them is the ‘Dilli Ki Yogshala’ program,” Kejriwal said at a press conference where he launched the mobile number.
- The Delhi government had claimed on November 1 that the LG had not approved the extension of the ‘Dilli Ki Yogshala’ program after October 31.
- Sources in LG’s secretariat said the office had not received any files requesting permission to extend the program.
The CM said those who wanted to contribute could send a message on the mobile number, confirming their willingness to contribute and also mention the number of teachers they wanted to fund. Each yoga teacher under the program is paid Rs 15,000 per month. “We will give them the name of the teacher and ensure that they give the check directly to that teacher,” he said, adding that the contribution must be in the multiples of Rs 15,000.
Criticizing LG Saxena and the BJP, the CM said: “It was very painful when they stopped the yoga classes. Nearly 17,000 people attended these courses. They said they wouldn’t pay the salaries of the yoga teachers. Who stops people from doing yoga? It is a sin.” The Delhi government had claimed on November 1 that the LG had not approved the extension of “Dilli Ki Yogshala” after October 31, but Kejriwal had announced that he would ensure that the courses of yoga do not stop.
Sources within the LG secretariat, however, said that Saxena’s office had not received any files requesting permission to extend the program beyond October 31.