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Shunglu panel report says ‘gross abuse of power’ by AAP govt: 5 things to know

The committee submitted the report to former Delhi LG Najeeb Jung last year, but it surfaced on Wednesday. While Jung had recommended a few inquiries based on the committee report, he refused to put it in public domain.

delhi Updated: Apr 06, 2017 16:23 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Shunglu panel,Najeeb Jung,Arvind Kejriwal
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal addressing a press conference in New Delhi.(PTI File Photo)

The three-member Shunglu Committee, set up by Delhi’s former lieutenant governor Najeeb Jung to look into the decisions taken by the Arvind Kejriwal government, has pointed out “gross abuse of power” by it in its report.

Jung had set up the committee in August last year under VK Shunglu, former comptroller and auditor general, after the Delhi high court ruled that the LG is Delhi’s administrator and said decisions taken by the city government without consulting him were illegal.

The committee submitted the report to Jung last year, but it surfaced on Wednesday. While Jung had recommended a few inquiries based on the committee report, he refused to put it in public domain.

The Congress accessed a copy of the report through Right to Information act and said it will make it public on Thursday.

Delhi health minister Satyendar Jain dismissed the report as “mudslinging” and said no irregularities have been committed by the AAP government. Jain said allegation about the appointment of his daughter as “mission director” of Delhi State Health Mission was “all lies” and added that the approval for the appointment is given by the Centre.

“We did nothing wrong or illegal but what was within our authority. If the LG had thought, he could have changed it, then he could have changed it. We did what we deemed fit,” Jain said.

Here is what the panel said:

1. The report that runs into over 100 pages deals with decisions, including the appointment of certain individuals as advisors to the government, taken by Kejriwal and his cabinet where it had no authority do so and without the LG’s concurrence.

2. The committee has flagged decisions, including the allotment of land to the AAP for its party office, the appointment of health minister Jain’s daughter as “mission director” of the Delhi State Health Mission and a number of purported AAP functionaries as “advisors”, in its report.

3. The report observes that the genesis of the conflict lay in an April 2015 order issued by Kejriwal to all the departments. It directed officers to take decisions without consulting the Lt Governor on all subjects that have been transferred to the Delhi Assembly under Article 239AA(3)a of the Indian Constitution.

4. The panel, which examined 404 files of the Kejriwal government, said the decision to allot land to the AAP to build a party office should be considered “null and void”. It also questioned the allotment of residence to DCW chairperson Swati Maliwal.

5. The report also raised questions on the government posting officers to the anti-corruption branch, its decisions on transfer and appointments of officers, foreign travel undertaken by ministers without the LG’s sanction and appointment of lawyers.

First Published: Apr 06, 2017 15:55 IST