Delhi: Punjab CM Mann visits schools, hospitals; to sign MOUs
Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann on Monday visited schools and hospitals in the national capital to know about the "Delhi model" and implement it in Punjab. Mann—on a two-day Delhi visit—will reportedly sign several Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with Delhi's government to introduce numerous health and educational facilities for Punjab's people. However, the opposition parties in Punjab targeted the chief minister over his Delhi visit.
Why does this story matter?
- Before taking power in Punjab, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) had promised to improve the state's schools and hospitals along the lines of its work in Delhi.
- Opposition parties, however, slammed Mann earlier, saying his government is being operated through "remote control" from Delhi.
- Now, his plans to replicate the Delhi government's model for schools and hospitals didn't sit well with Punjab's opposition leaders.
Mann's statement on his visit to Delhi schools
During his visit to a Delhi school, Mann said the students were being provided "next-level education" there. He said things that couldn't be implemented even by "big schools" are being offered by government schools. "I've seen such schools in America and Canada...not in India. I spoke with several students... They dropped out of big private schools to get enrolled here... It's mindblowing," Mann added.
Visit to learn, replicate Delhi model in Punjab: CMO
A spokesperson for the Chief Minister's Office said Mann's visit is aimed at improving Punjab's health and education infrastructure by learning from and replicating the "Delhi model." Along with visits to schools, clinics, and hospitals, Mann and his Delhi counterpart, AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal, also reportedly inaugurated a swimming pool at the Kautilya Government Sarvodya Bal Vidyalaya in Delhi's Chirag Enclave.
Mann joined by Punjab state officials on Delhi trip
Senior officials from Punjab's School Education Department and the Health and Family Welfare Department are reportedly accompanying Mann on his visit to learn about the current models of these sectors in Delhi. Notably, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, MK Stalin, had also paid a visit to the Kejriwal-led Delhi government's schools and mohalla clinics earlier this month.
Opposition parties in Punjab criticize Mann's Delhi visit
On Monday, Shiromani Akali Dal leader Daljit S Cheema criticized Mann's visit to Delhi government schools, calling it a "political drama." "Before planning a tour to study Delhi model of education, Bhagwant Mann should have toured his own schools to understand their strength and weaknesses," tweeted Cheema. Meanwhile, Punjab Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu called the visit a "waste of state exchequer" on Twitter.