The state government has issued a diktat to all bureaucrats to not attend any of the meetings called by Opposition leaders.
In a circular issued on May 10, chief secretary Ratnakar Gaikwad asked government officials not to attend any meetings that were called by leaders of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly or Council. He also warned them against being part of the tours organised by Opposition leaders.
“The Opposition leaders and heads of various high-level committees have been given status of ministers to carry out their responsibilities effectively. However, unlike ministers, they have not been given powers to supervise administrative functioning or organising meeting of officers or call them and issue any orders,” said the circular.
The chief secretary referred to previous such diktats issued by the government in 1992 and 2002 in support of the circular.
He also made it clear that non-government persons should not be allowed to intervene in routine administrative matters and implementation of various schemes of the government.
The circular assumes significance in wake of strained relations between the ruling party and the Opposition.
Eknath Khadse, Opposition leader in the assembly, had made a number of allegations against the ministers.
Reacting to the circular, Khadse said: “It seems that the government is afraid of Opposition leaders. I agree that the Opposition should not interfere in administrative matters, but what if we want to get information about something in the government and call the officers for the same?”
Khadse said the government was upset as the Opposition was exposing its misdeeds.