Haryana village gives fourth chief minister in Arvind Kejriwal

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Chandigarh, Dec 27: A dusty village in the Bhiwani region of Haryana that has produced three chief ministers is celebrating the success of its native Arvind Kejriwal, who will take oath as Delhi's chief minister on Saturday. While Kejriwal's close kin in Siwani village of Bhiwani district are enthusiastic about taking part in the oath taking ceremony in the national capital, his friends and teachers are also an excited lot.

"It is a matter of great joy and happiness for all of us. There have been celebrations in the family. Now, we are preparing to leave for Delhi," Kejriwal's cousin sister, Suman told PTI over phone this evening from Bhiwani. While 45-year-old Kejriwal's ancestors hailed from Kheda village of Bhiwani, the family is now based in Siwani village in the same district, over 300 km from here.

A battery of mediapersons descended at the village today for interviews and sound bytes of the family members as son-of-the-soil has witnessed a meteoric rise to power after breaking away from anti-graft crusader Anna Hazare and launching Aam Aadmi a year ago.

Some villagers gathered near the Kejriwal home with drums and congratulated the family. It was also a proud moment as Bhiwani district produced yet another chief minister, the earlier ones being former Haryana chief ministers-- Bansi Lal, Banarsi Dass and Master Hukam Singh. Kejriwal's uncle Girdari Lal, close relatives and friends Deen Dayal Bansal and Rattan Lal, too, were in a jubilant mood.

"It is a moment of great joy and happiness for not just the family, but for every common man, who has been striving to change the system for good," said Bansal.

Kejriwal's mathematics teacher Satish Bala while speaking to reporters in Bhiwani recalled the inquisitive brain of the AAP leader right from childhood. "He would ask questions, he wanted to find out more and more about what he was reading. He was filled with passion about what he did. Even when he used to score very high grades in examinations, he never looked very excited, he would not rest and always strived to do even better," Bala said.

Another teacher Raj Mehta recalled that once Kejriwal, who was running high fever, had been advised by his teachers to take rest and not participate in a declamation contest, but he insisted and won the competition. "He was a great orator right from his childhood," she recalled. Manoj Kumar, a villager, recalled that Kejriwal's ancestors were of helping nature and had got a well dug up so that women do not have to walk distances to fetch water.

"They had also got a temple constructed in the village," he said. 45-year-old Kejriwal, a Magsaysay award winner who quit Indian Revenue Services to fight graft and shot into limelight as an RTI activist and later with Jan Lokpal bill agitation, will take oath as Delhi's youngest Chief Minister along with six of his ministerial colleagues at a public function at the historic Ramlila Maidan.

PTI

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