UP?s first: 2 PS for VS
NOW THAT AN Mittal has joined as the second principal secretary in the Vidhan Sabha today, the State Assembly earned the distinction of being the only Vidhan Sabha in the country, which has two principal secretaries with same powers and status.
Interestingly, immediately after taking over his new assignment, Mittal was appointed Returning Officer for the Rajya Sabha by-election in which, Jaya Bachchan is the Samajwadi Party nominee.
Established norms of creation of a post and necessary sanction from different departments were also initially ignored to appoint an additional principal secretary to curtail the powers of the existing one. Vidhan Sabha Spreaker Mata Prasad Pandey straight away sent the files to the Chief Minister, who in turn immediately approved the same and sent it to the Finance Department to complete other formalities.
Soon after, the Legislation and Parliamentary Affairs Department created the post, despite the fact that it had no powers to do so. As per rules, the Speaker is supposed to give details with reason and logic for creation of any post in his Secretariat and then send the file to the Finance Department for approval but it was not done.
Two special secretaries of the Vidhan Sabha Sachivalaya were asked to issue the order of creation of the post and appointment letter but both of them are alleged to have refused to do so on the plea that they were not competent for it and such orders should be signed by principal secretary Rajendra Prasad Pandey. Later, Pandey agreed to sign the file but before that he ensured that all formalities through proper channel were completed.
Reacting to the move of appointing an additional principal secretary, leader of the opposition Lalji Tandon said it was unprecedented and regretted that the Vidhan Sabha and its proceedings were now becoming irrelevant as the Government hardly redeemed its promises.