Senior Aam Aadmi Party leader Manish Sisodia on Saturday brushed aside criticism that teachers were being forced to attend Arvind Kejriwal’s oath-taking ceremony on Sunday.
Delhi’s Directorate of Education (DoE) had issued a circular to its officials, teachers and principals of government-run schools to attend the swearing-in-ceremony of Kejriwal and his council of ministers.
The circular also said attendance will be compiled at the entry gates of the Ramlila Maidan, where CM-designate Arvind Kejriwal and his council of ministers will take the oath.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Kapil Mishra had tweeted on Saturday that “them to follow the government orders is the beginning of a wrong tradition.”
Manish Sisodia, while replying to a reporter’s question, said they have extended an invitation to the teachers to praise them for their work.
“They don’t know how to honour teachers. This is the first time people have praised the work done by teachers during an election,” he said during a press conference.
“Many teachers are enthusiastic and have approached me saying they want to come,” he added.
Kejriwal has also all sent an invitation to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the seven BJP MPs from the city to the event scheduled for 10am Sunday but no other leaders from other parties have been invited.
When asked whether the Prime Minister will come, Sisodia said they don’t have any confirmation so far.
He also reiterated that the AAP has invited the “architects of Delhi” at Ramlila Maidan, where his party had led an anti-corruption movement before joining mainstream politics.
Kejriwal has invited 50 people who have helped Delhi make better in the last five years when he takes oath as Delhi’s chief minister on Sunday, Sisodia said.
“The CM has decided he will take oath in the presence of people who have helped him make Delhi better and helped him run Delhi. They will be the people who will support him in the next five years,” Sisodia said.
“The chief minister has invited all the residents of Delhi to tell them that his son will take the oath of office and they should come,” he said.
Sisodia was referring to the advertisements in newspapers urging all residents of the city to attend the event.
The AAP leader said the special guests will be the representative of those who helped Delhi move ahead and will share the stage with Arvind Kejriwal.
He said teachers, head of schools, school peons, students who got the benefit of government schemes, students who won the Olympiads in Moscow, doctors from mohalla clinics, bike ambulance drivers, families of firefighters who lost their lives, safai karamcharis, bus marshals, architects of the Signature Bridge, constructions workers who changed the face of the unauthorised colonies, door to door service executive and farmers of Delhi will be among those.
Kejriwal is set to take oath as Delhi’s chief minister for the third time on Sunday, days after the AAP won a massive majority of 62 seats in the 70-member Delhi assembly.
Six other ministers will also be the part of the swearing-in ceremony. Manish Sisodia, Satyender Jain, Gopal Rai, Kailash Gehlot, Imran Hussain and Rajendra Gautam will be among them.
The AAP government’s oath-taking ceremony in 2015 was also held at Ramlila Maidan.
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