Lunch With Kejriwal: Gujarat Sanitary Worker Gets Emotional

Harsh Solanki, a sanitary worker from Gujarat, finds it hard to believe that he travelled from Ahmedabad to Delhi on a flight and had lunch with the Chief minister of Delhi.

NEW DELHI | Updated: 26 September, 2022 8:45 pm IST
Harsh Solanki, along with his mother and sister, had lunch at the residence of Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal

For Harsh Solanki, it was a day he would likely forget in his lifetime. The 25-year-old sanitary worker from Gujarat still finds it hard to believe that he travelled from Ahmedabad to Delhi on a flight and had lunch with the Chief minister of Delhi.

“I still can’t believe it. It is surreal,” Harsh said after having lunch at Arvind Kejriwal’s residence on Monday. For a man from the scheduled caste Valmiki community, who lives in a society where politicians never tread, it was a magical Monday.

Such is the occasion that Solanki could not control his emotions as he hugged the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) national convenor in admiration of his warmth and humility. Solanki also gave Kejriwal a photograph of Babasaheb Ambedkar, the Dalit icon.

Speaking to The New Indian, Solanki said, “It feels like we are in a dream with open eyes. I never thought this could happen. None of the politicians ever came to our community or our society. We are all thankful to the Delhi CM for this gesture.”

Before lunch at Kejriwal’s residence, Solanki also visited a Delhi government school and a mohalla clinic. He was accompanied by the president of AAP’s Gujarat unit, Gopal Italia.

“Government schools in Gujarat lacked the facilities that are provided in the government schools of Delhi. I think government schools in Gujarat also need the same facilities,” Solanki said following his visit.

“I thank Solanki and his family for travelling so far and allowing us to host them. I will go to their home to have a meal with them when I visit Ahmedabad next,” Kejriwal later said.

Commenting on the love and adulation he gets from common people, Kejriwal said, “We don’t have time for petty politics. We work for the public. We build schools, hospitals, and roads for the people. We supply them with electricity at no cost and with water. That’s why the public likes us.”

Citing the Rajasthan political crisis, Kejriwal said, “Both the parties (Congress and BJP) are involved in dividing others. But we still do the work towards the welfare of people.”

“People want their voices to be heard, and that’s what we do. The public first helped us form a government in Delhi. They then helped us form a government in Punjab. And now, I heard that people in Gujarat are saying that AAP’s government will be formed in the state too,” he added.

“People associate with us because we solve their problems. We talk about providing quality education and jobs for their children. We talk about giving permanent jobs and higher salaries,” Kejriwal said.

AAP MP and party’s Gujarat election in-charge Raghav Chadha said till now, leaders used to go to people’s houses for votes, but today a leader (Kejriwal) has heartily invited someone’s family to come to his house.

“For many years, there has been a gap between the public and the public representatives. This is an attempt to bridge the gap,” Chadha added.

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