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Pending work and no cabinet meeting: Delhi suffers as Kejriwal-bureaucrats face-­off continues

As Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s sit-in protest entered its eighth day, work at the Delhi Secretariat continued at a snail’s pace. Preparations for the impending monsoon in Delhi were some of the works that were slowed down after the protest.

delhi Updated: Jun 19, 2018 08:19 IST
Sweta Goswami
Sweta Goswami
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Arvind Kejriwal,Delhi government,Delhi IAS officers strike
Aam Aadmi Party’s protest march led by senior leader Sanjay Singh against the Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal, in New Delhi.(Sanchit Khanna/HT File Photo)

Two board meetings of government agencies and preparations for the impending monsoon were some of the works that were slowed down because of the sit-in by chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and his cabinet colleagues, and the ongoing protest by the bureaucracy.

As the sit-in protest entered its eighth day, work at the Delhi Secretariat continued at a snail’s pace. Cabinet meetings, usually held on Tuesdays, haven’t taken place in four weeks. A government report accessed by Hindustan Times stated the last Cabinet meeting was held on May 22. Besides, no Cabinet meeting has been scheduled for this week yet.

The report also stated that as of June 14, around 180 files are pending with seven ministers of the Delhi cabinet, of which 81 were “important files pending for more than a week”. While two files were pending with Kejriwal, 24 were with Sisodia, four with Rai, 17 with Jain and the remaining were with the four others.

While Kejriwal, Rai, deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia and PWD minister Satyendar Jain were staging the protest at the L-G office, transport minister Kailash Gahlot, environment minister Imran Hussain and social welfare minister Ranjendra Pal Guatam were occasionally found working.

An AAP functionary said Gahlot and Gautam played a vital role in amassing the crowd for the rallies on Wednesday and Sunday. During this time, Hussain called for meetings, even as bureaucrats refused to turn up.

Gahlot had around 21 files of the transport department with him. On Monday, he cleared and returned them to the officials. The files included important works such as allotment of depots for cluster buses, wages for cluster bus drivers etc.

A government spokesperson said that a meeting on reviewing monsoon preparedness is also due. “The meeting will now be held on June 25 and the fresh target of finishing all monsoon-related work is June 30,” he said.

Important meetings were also cancelled since the ministers were not available.

Sanjay Kumar, Director, Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, said, “A battle of prestige is playing out in Delhi. The sooner it is resolved, the better it is for the people.”

First Published: Jun 19, 2018 07:42 IST