A Supreme Court bench comprising Arun Mishra and Deepak Gupta today (Friday) came down strongly on Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government’s for asking that the Centre be directed to share 50 per of Delhi Metro Phase IV’s land costs while it was simultaneously offering massive freebies, reports Hindustan Times.
In its plea, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government has not just asked for the Centre to pay half of the land costs, but share in payments of taxes for the expansion and come to DMRC’s rescue if it defaults on the Japanese loan it was taken out to finance the project.
“On one hand it (Delhi government) is extending sops but in court it wants direction to Centre to bear 50 per cent operational losses, if ever incurred in future... if you allow people to travel free then it will be a problem, if you give freebies then there will be a problem,” the court said.
The court added that it was not powerless to direct that public funds be properly when a self-treated bankruptcy was being caused.
The comments of the court are a reference to the AAP government’s recent promise to make travel entirely free for women passengers travelling on the Delhi Metro and the cluster buses in the national capital. Many criticised the move for being politically motivated ahead of the Delhi Assembly elections scheduled for 2020.