Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit has pulled up one of her ministers for allegedly harassing a five-star city hotel after its officials insisted on carrying out checking of his car when he had gone there for a function last week.
Social Welfare Minister Mangat Ram Singhal allegedly had a tiff with the securitymen of the Maurya Sheraton Hotel on Wednesday evening. The minister did not allow the personnel to check his car and allegedly got into an argument.
Following the incident, inspectors from various departments including Food Adulteration Department and Electrical, Labour and Health Department went to the hotel to check its compliance with various government rules.
They also lifted food samples and carried checking of electrical fittings, fire preparedness and implementation of labour laws.
When Dikshit came to know about the inspections, she summoned the minister to her office and pulled him up for allegedly harassing the hotel for no reason.
Reportedly, some senior Congress leaders contacted Dikshit's office, requesting her to stop the "harassment" of the hotel.
When contacted, Singhal denied that he entered into any verbal duel with the securitymen at the hotel, but admitted that the Chief Minister had referred to reports in this regard.
"The CM has the right to give me instructions. She is my boss. I will have to follow her instructions," he told PTI.
However, the minister claimed he never asked any official to conduct inspections at the hotel.
"I have been a minister for last so many years. I know the security drill. I never sent anybody to the hotel. It must have been a regular checking by various departments as part of the preparations for the Commonwealth Games."
"The inspection must have been for checking the hotel's fire safety measures as well as the quality of food served to the people," he said.
As per norms, vehicles of the Chief Minister and Lt Governor are exempted from security check.
Sources in the CM's office said she was very upset about the incident and told Singhal and officials of the department concerned not to repeat this in future.