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HomeTop NewsFacing corruption in Mumbai? Dial 096 99 949331

Facing corruption in Mumbai?
Dial 096 99 949331

Aam Aadmi Party’s anti-corruption helpline number (096 99 949331) is executing well in Mumbai after it launch. The motto of the party as ‘anti-corruption crusader’ was conceived way before the party came into existence. Keeping his third promise in mind, Former Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal launched the much-awaited anti-corruption helpline. Basically, AAP launched this helpline number during their Lok Sabha election campaign in Mumbai to deal with corruption and promised action in minimum period. Unfortunately, it wasn’t as hit as it was in Delhi. In spite of losing election AAP never gave up. To give meaning to this particular agenda AAP re -launched an anti-corruption helpline in Mumbai and its metropolitan region to help and guide the citizens who face corruption on a daily basis and are forced to pay bribes, offer gifts to get their work done.

According to records, it had received more than 3,200 calls in the first two and a half hours of its functioning at Delhi. In Mumbai and Maharashtra the scenario is different; they receive on an average about 50 calls a day and 3 to 4 cases get resolved at the same time. This help line makes every Mumbai citizen an anti-corruption crusader. Just with a phone, every citizen has the power to expose the corrupt and act against dishonest ones.

To check how this helpline responds, our team made telephone calls to the help line number several times. Initially, it was very difficult to reach the executives. Finally, our correspondent called Mayank Gandhi, AAP, Maharashtra unit President and he took her further on conference with anti-corruption help line executive. For the first time, it will be difficult but by repeated effort,s you can register your complaint to an operator.

Mayank-GandhiWhen AV asked about the purpose of this helpline to Mr. Mayank Gandhi, he replied, “The purpose of launching this helpline is to create fear in every corrupt individual. By acting on complaints, even the concerned officers will have fear that they might be under scrutiny. He personally keeps check on helplines, sometimes he himself attends complaints and deputes respective volunteers to solve the issues. Response is overwhelming and many have joined us to seek training to fight corruption.”

Arvind Kejriwal is known as anti-corruption fighter, and his party members follow his footsteps to deal with such issues. This helpline is aimed at stopping rampant corruption among government offices. “Indians routinely complain they are forced to pay bribes to obtain everything from marriage certificates, driving licenses to death certificates, rationing cards to passports,” Gandhi further added.

Preety LeadPreeti Sharma Menon, Secretary of AAP’s Maharashtra State Unit said, “We launched this help line during our election campaign in Maharashtra, our motive is to educate people and create awareness. People are not aware of available mediums to fight corruption, they don’t know how to file RTI, ask right questions and seek answers to particular issues. We want to craft aids to fight corruption on every level. We have trained team to council and provide legal aids to help seekers. We hope our efforts may help forming a corruption free society.”

We are getting approximately 60 to 70 calls per day.
Ravi-Shrivastava-leadOur correspondent interviewed Ravi Shrivastava, State Committee Member of Aam Aadmi Party, Maharashtra unit, to know further in detail about the following helpline.

Q1. After calling this anti corruption number, what are the formalities one needs to go through or what is the procedure?
Yes, if a person calls us to complain about corruption then we seek some personal information from him/her. For e.g. from where he is calling from, what are the complaints, what are his contact details? We also ask them about their efforts to solve the issue. After this preliminary enquiry, matter will be passed on to the area coordinator. We have 12 Area Coordinators in six parliamentary constituencies in Mumbai.

Q2. Is there any mechanism to bifurcate the complaints and forward them to concerned desk?
As explained in the above answer, complaint will be forwarded to concerned Area Coordinator, who will speak to complainant and fix up a time with the concerned Authority/official and try to solve the issue.

Q3. How many corrupt officers have been trapped through this initiative?
It’s too early to say. We have launched it just five days ago. We are getting approximately 60 to 70 calls per day. We have forwarded three cases to Area Coordinators, two in south Mumbai and another one in Andheri. Our objective is to help victims so that their work is done. If someone does not want to reveal his identity then we direct the case to ACB. Our teams are in close contact with ACB officials. One can lodge a complaint to ACB on 1064 as an anonymous complainant.

Q4. How many people are trained to fight against corruption and which age group is more attracted towards this cause?
We have trained around 64 people in Mumbai and constitute a team. Each team has 5 to 7 members out of which two are ladies and one experienced activist.

    There are few guidelines which each member has to follow and they are as under:

  • a) No abusive, threatening language will be used. Team will approach without slogan shouting and behavior in the office premises will be gentleman like.
  • b). No aggressiveness in approach, have to speak politely but firmly. No identity card will be issued, only AAP Caps & Badges.
  • c). No arguments, senior member will decide when to close the discussion.
  • d). No one will speak to the complainant alone; it will always be in group. All volunteers will abide by Party code of conduct.

Q5. On a wider perspective, what is your next step towards the upgradation of this line and services?
At next level, we intend to include BMC services, SRA issues, Dam scam, Road pothole repair etc.

Q6. Whose brain child is this “helpline” service?
Shri. Arvind Kejriwalji

Q7. What are the major challenges that you face while dealing with such problems?
People are afraid when they are calling us. They don’t want to reveal their identity. Sometimes, they say one of his friends is facing the problem and on behalf of him, I’m calling here. Yes, I would like to clarify that we do not take family disputes, property issues, society problems, police corruption etc.

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