(EDS: Adds appearance of officer before privilege committee) Puducherry, Apr 6 (PTI) Puducherry Lt Governor Kiran Bedi, who is at loggerheads with the Congress government over transfer of a top official, today charged the UT Chief Secretary with “abetting” an administrative breakdown by disregarding her “warning” not to shift him.
“Despite my firm warning to CS by email not to rush d transfer order he did. C encl rules. He abetted an admin breakdown (sic),” she tweeted.
She was referring to the March 30 order issued by Chief Secretary Manoj Parida replacing Municipal Commissioner R Chandrasekheran, whom she later reinstated after terming the transfer order as invalid.
Bedi, who has been issuing a series of statements since then explaining her stand, said when a Chief Secretary of a Union Territory “decides to side step rules and processes to defy lawful instructions, dependent on the case, can cause administrative breakdown…”
The Lt Governor also said she met the Union Home Secretary on March 31 and discussed the issue. She later issued the directive reinstating Chandrasekharan.
Bedi also shared on Twitter two e-mails she had sent to her Secretary G Theva Neethi Dhas in which she had said the matter fell under the purview of the Lt Governor.
Raking up another issue, the former IPS officer said as per reports of Provident Fund officials, there was “default” by PSUs of Puducherry in provident fund remittences to the tune of Rs 36.23 crore.
She said the Union Territory needed a committee on lines of Shunglu panel (on AAP government in Delhi) to look into the way it was being administered.
A three-member panel headed by former CAG VK Shunglu was set up in August 2016 by the then Lt Governor Najeeb Jung to probe the allegation of irregularities in the functioning of the Delhi government.
“Pudduchery also needs a ‘Shunglu Committee’ to look into way UT is being administered. Latest is (Rs) 36.23 Crores of PF of employees defaulted!,” Bedi tweeted.
“It’s not only defaulted, its collected but not deposited in officers acct (accounts) as reported by PF officers,” she said in the tweet.
She said, “For the management of Puducherry it is vital that the bureaucracy plays its neutral course and places right rules for administration and political leadership to take considered decisions and not sidesteps as has been done by Chief Secretary of Puducherry which has caused breakdown of administrative work.”
Chandrasekharan was removed from the post of Puducherry Municipal Commissioner on an order by Speaker V Vaithilingam over a privilege motion raised by opposition AIADMK.
Meanwhile, Chandrasekharan today appeared before the Privileges Committee in connection with privilege issue raised by AIADMK MLA A Baskar for allegedly conducting meetings in Mudaliarpet constituency, represented by him, without informing him.
K Lakshminarayanan, one of the members of the Privilege Committee, told reporters that Chandrasekaran was given a copy of the complaint given by Baskar and asked to submit his explanation by April 20.
Chief Minister V Narayanasamy, who virtually questioned the Lt Governor’s contention that she alone has the powers to appoint UT officials, had on April 2 asserted that the Speaker’s order was final on Chandrasekaran’s removal.
Bedi has been at loggerheads with the Narayanasamy Ministry over various issues since the UT government took charge in May last year after assembly elections.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.