Aam rickshaw puller launches hospital

The Aam Aadmi Party on Saturday projected volunteers as their heroes. The 60-year-old rickshaw puller Vijay Baba, who is barely 5 ft 4 inch tall and wears the trademark aam aadmi cap at times, inaugurated an upgraded Palika Maternity Hospital at Lodi Colony.

The Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal recommended Baba’s name to the New Delhi Municipal Council, which wanted the CM to inaugurate the facility. The foundation stone had Baba’s name on the top, followed by MP Ajay Makan and Arvind Kejriwal.
The upgraded hospital promises round-the-clock emergency services with 65 beds, a new OPD and indoor block, a neonatal ICU, a modular operation theatre and a labour room.

Baba is a frail man, but a very enthusiastic volunteer for AAP. His friends say he is usually spotted either at the party office in central Delhi or at the designated protest ground, Jantar Mantar.

Vijay Baba called it a major honour and said that he had never imagined that Kejriwal would invite him to inaugurate the hospital.

Volunteers for ministries

Kejriwal also appointed 15 long-time volunteers to coordinate with various ministries. “We have been asked to help the government organise janata darbars and keep track on the progress of every complaints received,” said Amit Kumar Srivastava, 25, an engineering student who has worked with Kejriwal since the Anna Hazare’s anti-corruption crusade in 2011.

He said the volunteers will ask a detailed report from government officers on various complaints and would submit a report to the Chief Minister. A system has been put in place to receive both online and offline complaints.

“We will use India Against Corruption call centre to receive complaints through telephone,” he said.

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