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Indian-origin mayoral candidate wants to run London like a ‘seasoned CEO’

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LONDON, April 21: Tarun Ghulati, the Indian-origin candidate in the race to challenge Sadiq Khan from winning a third term as Mayor of London, has said that the citizens of the UK capital have been let down by all the major political parties and he wants to run London like a “seasoned CEO” which delivers profits for all.

The Delhi-born businessman believes his investment expertise is what London needs to revive its fortunes as the “global bank of the world” by attracting the investment it needs. The 63-year-old is standing as an Independent candidate among 13 contestants in the fray for the local elections on May 2, when Londoners will vote for their Mayor and also for members of the London Assembly.

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“I view London as a unique global city, akin to the ‘global bank of the world’ where diverse cultures converge to flourish,” Ghulati said in a speech this week.

“As Mayor, I will build London’s balance sheet such that it is the premier choice for investment, safeguarding safety and prosperity for all its residents. I will transform and run London effectively and efficiently like a seasoned CEO. London will be a profitable corporate where profitability means the wellbeing of all. You will all be part of the journey. Let’s do it for our London, our home,” he said.

Safety on the streets of the city is among his other major priorities, with visible community policing and more officers patrolling on the beat on the agenda.

“It is about having enough bobbies on the beat, having the resources for police officers to do their jobs; which means making the streets safe for women to walk at night, with muggers and burglars being caught and punished,” he said.

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Scrapping some of the Labour Party incumbent Sadiq Khan’s unpopular policies, such as the high costs associated with Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) charges and Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs) across the city, also make up Ghulati’s key policy planks.

“We did not want ULEZ, LTNs or 20mph speed limits and many other poor policies… Climate change is happening and we need to mitigate its effects but that cannot be done by making everyone live 15 minutes from home or to penalise commuters in areas with little public transport. What changes we need to make must be paced with public opinion, not imposed in an arbitrary way on wallets coping with the cost of living,” said Ghulati, who has called London his home for 20 years.

He is equally scathing about the Conservative Party candidate for Mayor, Susan Hall, who he claims failed to block the Mayor’s controversial policies despite being an Assembly member for London for many years.

“I would not be a candidate for Mayor if the political candidates were doing what they should be doing. They have let us down. This is all about London and Londoners,” he declared.

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Creating more affordable housing, minimising council tax, increasing focus on tourism to the UK capital and ensuring free school meals are among some of Ghulati’s other focus areas. He claims to have canvassed from borough to borough across London to garner his required signatures to support his mayoral candidature. Ghulati also features in the official mini manifesto booklet, which costs each candidate GBP 10,000.

The winning mayoral candidate will be responsible for all local issues affecting Londoners, from transport and policing to housing and the environment. (PTI)

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