AAP-LG tussle continues, Kejriwal to meet president
New Delhi: The turf war between the Arvind Kejriwal government and Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung over postings and transfers of bureaucrats intensified on Monday as the Delhi chief minister decided to take up the matter with the president and the prime minister.
While Jung in a letter on Monday rejected the handing over of the additional charge of principal secretary (services) Anindo Majumdar to Rajendra Kumar, who is secretary to the chief minster, the Aam Aadmi Party government said it would not pay heed to it and would seek Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s intervention.
“We received your letter today (Monday). What you have written is against the Constitution and that’s why we cannot pay heed to it. In this matter, our chief minister (Kejriwal) will write to the prime minister,” a government source quoted to IANS from the letter written to Jung.
Meanwhile, Kejriwal sought and was given time by President Pranab Mukherjee.
He will meet the President at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, and apprise him of the ongoing issue, a Delhi government official said.
Earlier on Monday, the AAP removed Majumdar from the post of principal secretary (services).
He had issued the order of posting of Shakuntala Gamlin as the interim chief secretary. It was the appointment of Gamlin by Jung which triggered the feud.
Majumdar’s office on the seventh floor of the Delhi Secretariat was found locked on Monday.
When asked, a Delhi government official said: “It is natural… when you have been removed from the post, your office will be locked too.”
Rajendra Kumar has been given charge of the principal secretary (services) of the Delhi government, an official said.
Reacting to Rajendra Kumar’s appointment, Lt. Governor Jung shot off a letter to Kejriwal, declaring the appointment “void”.
In his letter to the chief minister, Jung said he rejected Rajendra Kumar’s appointment as it did not have his approval.
Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia confirmed that he had received the letter.
“Letter received from Hon. LG at 14.35,” Sisodia tweeted.
An official of the Delhi government said a “due reply to the letter is being formed and will be sent to the Lt. Governor”.
Reacting to the full-blown turf war between the two centres of power, former chief minister and Congress leader Sheila Dikshit, said: “This sort of controversy is not healthy for good governance. The tussle between Jung and Kejriwal has demoralised the bureaucracy.”
“Good governance very much depends on the bureaucrats as well as the other staff of the government. But such atmosphere of confrontation paralyses the administration affecting the development of the region,” she added.
The tussle erupted on May 15 over the appointment of Gamlin as the chief secretary in-charge, whom the chief minister accused of lobbying for power distribution companies.
Kejriwal on Sunday attacked the Modi government over Gamlin’s appointment as acting chief secretary of Delhi, saying it was meant to trip his government.