Kejriwal billboards urge people to conduct sting

Kejriwal billboards urge people to conduct sting

People of Delhi woke up to see an unusual billboard put up at strategic locations in the capital - Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal asking citizens not to say no to demands of bribes from any official or functionary.

"'Agar aapse koi rishwat maange; to mana mat karna. Ek number dunga uspe phone karna'," (If someone demands bribe, do not refuse. Call on the number I will give you), read the billboard that carried Kerjiwal's face. 

The move comes after the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP)-led government launched an anti-corruption helpline this month as part of its drive to root out corruption.

"One such billboard is right opposite my house in sector A in Vasant Kunj perched atop a bus stop," said 28-year-old Aniruddho Chakraborty, who works with a digital advertising company.

Chakraborty added that the billboards scream out to people to record incidents of bribe demands made to them, record them and then give it to the Kejriwal-led government.The helpline was launched for those who have been asked to pay a bribe by any official in the capital. 

Such people can seek help on phone number 011-27357169, which received over 23,000 calls within two days of its launch Jan 8. The government followed it up with a four-digit easy-to-remember helpline number 1031 also.

"I think such billboards were put up just last week. They have the sole intention of encouraging people to speak up against corruption," a spokesman of the AAP told IANS.

Soubhik Mukherjee, 28, welcomed the move and said that such a citizen drive can only improve things.

"This is a positive beginning. At least, they are trying to make a difference, contrary to what other politicians have done over the years," Mukherjee told IANS.

"This will at least put fear in the mind of the corrupt. Such a citizen drive can only improve these sentiments," he said.

However, there are a few sceptics like 27-year-old Amit Kumar, who spotted such a billboard near AIIMS.

"It theoretically aims to empower the people. However, at a time when audio recordings are not considered as an evidence in courts, I wonder how this will be of much help," he added.

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