After informing President Pranab Mukherjee of Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung’s ‘unconstitutional approach,’ the government of Delhi has called a meeting of senior bureaucrats in the state to apprise them of procedures to be followed.
After the three-month-old Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Delhi initiated a series of action against bureaucrats in the capital, they are now scared to clear files without consulting ministers concerned, say sources. The meeting is aimed at clearing this confusion.
“We want them (bureaucrats) to follow the Constitution. We want to reiterate the provisions of Article 239 AA of the Constitution, the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991 and the Transaction of Business of the Government of NCT of Delhi Rules, 1993 (TBR),” a Delhi government official said.
The government is focusing on Rule 4 of the TBR, which makes it clear that the minister in-charge of the department is responsible for the disposal of business pertaining to it.
“Chapter IV and V of the TBR outline the protocol for disposing of business relating to the L-G’s executive function and procedures to be followed in case of a difference of opinion between the L-G and ministers. None of the three statues authorise the L-G to issue any order or direction to the chief secretary or any other secretary, bypassing the minister in-charge or the council of ministers,” he added.
Earlier in May, a row broke out between Jung and chief minister Arvind Kejriwal after the former appointed the chief secretary of Delhi without consulting the state government. The government now wants to ensure that all such decisions are made in consultation with CM.
According to sources, the chief minister is concerned that the governor’s office is issuing verbal orders, such as in the case of principal secretary (services) Anindo Majumdar’s appointment. The CM has also issued an order to the entire higher administrative machinery in the state - “no action will be taken by the administrative secretary or the chief secretary till written directions are received from the chief minister or the minister in-charge.”
Meanwhile, Anindo Majumdar’s office remained locked on Tuesday. He was removed from the post of principal secretary on Saturday, May 16, for issuing an order notifying Shakuntala Gamlin’s appointment to the post of acting chief secretary.
Later, Gamlin met L-G and complained against the power minister.
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