My 35-year work reflects in Janakpuri, says Mukhi

Jagdish Mukhi, a veteran leader and BJP candidate from Janakpuri, speaks to Shiv Sunny about the issues on which he will seek votes this time. Edited excerpts from the interview:

Janakpuri voters have elected you their representative on five consecutive occasions. Do you have anything new to offer this time?
My constituency consists of three kinds of population. One is the regulated colonies of Janakpuri which have received all the comforts and is heading for luxuries now.
The second category consists of unauthorised but regulated colonies like Virender Nagar and Milap Nagar.
They have received the basic amenities and are now being provided comforts. The third population is from areas like Jeevan Park and Seetapuri which are purely unauthorised and are being provided the basic amenities.

How would you describe these luxuries, comforts and basic necessities?
Janakpuri has the best of roads and there are no open drains irrespective of the width of the road. The luxuries include several functional swimming pools, gymnasiums and skating rings.
The comforts include designer gates, clinics, better roads and electricity. Basic amenities refer to providing water and electricity connections to all houses and constructing roads in those colonies.

You have represented Janakpuri as its legislator for five consecutive terms. Why is there still such disparity?
I have represented Janakpuri for the last 35 years, so you can see the development. The second category I have been representing for the last 21 years. But the areas under the third category came under Janakpuri constituency only for the last six years. Yet, it is the first constituency which has 100 per cent water and sewer connections. Seventy-five per cent of the roads in those colonies have been constructed already. I even ensured that a building was taken on rent in one of those areas to set up a dispensary.

Will the third category of population ever receive the luxuries currently provided to Janakpuri colonies?
One should not make false promises. The 10 or 20 feet wide roads in those areas cannot be further widened. A woman in Seetapuri asked me if parks like those in Janakpuri would ever come up in her locality. I cannot promise parks in such colonies where there is little scope to even create an entrance. I cannot bring down their buildings to create parks.

You were tipped to be BJP’s chief ministerial candidate before Kiran Bedi joined the party. Has that dampened your spirit?
We will project a strong and honest candidate. Kiran Bedi fulfils all those criteria. I am a soldier of the party and will continue to serve like before. We are united.

Your son-in-law Suresh Kumar is contesting against you on a Congress ticket. Has that strained relations between the two families?
This is a parliamentary democracy and it is not unusual for members from one family to contest elections against each other. I am contesting against a party and its policies, not an individual. (Parries question on whether the two families still talk and meet each other)

Has this put your daughter in a difficult spot?
 No. I have told her to openly support her husband in this contest against me. (Mukhi’s wife Prem some days ago told Deccan Herald that she would vote for her husband)

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