LG Jung takes on Kejriwal yet again.
NEW DELHI: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has sought a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi following a contentious memo issued by Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung.
In a memo issued late on Thursday night, Lt Governor's office ordered senior bureaucrats to defy illegal orders of the provincial government or face action.
"The government of India has taken note of current constitutional position in Delhi and major instances of violation of constitution, law and rules, such as change in the pay structure of DANICS (Delhi Andaman and Nicobar Islands Civil Service) officers, the constitution of so-called Commission of Inquiry etc," the memorandum signed by Jung says, adding that these decision of the Kejriwal government had been declared illegal by the federal government.
The Delhi Lt Governor warned officials that in case they follow the provincial government, they could face disciplinary action as well as monetary fines for recovery of financial loss caused to the government as a result of such an action.
The memorandum says that any officer deputed with the Delhi government will he held responsible and invite action if they act contrary to the orders/directions of the Government of India and it's delegates i.e. Lt Governor and takes any action against the provisions of the constitution, laws and rules to implement illegal and an initio void orders.
The Lt Governor's memo is being seen as the latest flashpoint in the ongoing turf war between him and the Delhi chief minister. Lt Governor functions as the federal government's representative in Delhi and is empowered to exercise certain powers the federal government holds as Delhi enjoys limited statehood.
Kejriwal has already taken his complaint against Jung to President Pranab Mukherjee, Prime Minister Modi, Home Minister Rajnath Singh while his government's plea to restrain the Lt Governor from interfering in the functioning of his government is pending before the Delhi High Court.
The Lt Governor's memo has come when Delhi is reeling under severe outbreak of dengue which has claimed over a dozen lives and the blame game going in between the provincial and federal governments.
Expectedly, Kejriwal did not take kindly to Jung's memo to his officials. "I want to request the central government and [prime minister] Narendra Modi that Delhi is fighting with dengue and in such situation this kind of letter is not right. If they want to do something then they should help Delhi government to help fight this disease," Kejriwal said.
Lt Governor Jung and Kejriwal have been at loggerheads ever since the Aam Aadmi Party government came to power in February this year with a huge majority. Kejriwal had promised his voters full statehood status to Delhi and saw in Jung an impediment to his government's functioning. Kejriwal even went on term Jung as an election agent of Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), prompting Jung to say jokingly, God forgive those who know not what they are saying.
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