Gov questions ‘urgency’ behind ordinance to give cabinet minister rank to minority panel chief

Asking the government to reconsider its proposal, the Governor has quoted orders of the Supreme Court as well.

By: Express News Service | Lucknow | Published: September 11, 2014 4:51 am

Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik Wednesday questioned the “urgency” shown by the Akhilesh Yadav government in according “cabinet minister status” to the chairman of the state Minority Commission and has and asked it to re-consider an ordinance sent in this regard.
In a letter to Akhilesh, Naik referred to the ordinance sent to him by state cabinet proposing amendment in the “Uttar Pradesh Minority Commission Act 1994” to give “Cabinet Minister status” to its chairman.

Seeking clarification, Governor said in his letter that apart from fulfilling other significant conditions, it is necessary to explain the “urgency” for bringing an ordinance. He has said that when chairman of the Minority Commission was working without the status of cabinet minister for past 20 years (since 1994), the question of urgency in giving him the cabinet minister status through an ordinance should be considered.

Asking the government to reconsider its proposal, the Governor has quoted orders of the Supreme Court as well as the Lucknow bench of Allahabad High Court where giving minister rank to any statutory authority appointed under regular course or through an ordinance has been challenged.

Further he has also quoted the National Minority Educational Institution Commission Act 2004, where its chairman has been termed as “Lok Sewak (public servant)”. Indicating that the chairman of the above commission does not come under the category of minister, Governor has asked the government to consider these point and clarify.

Shakeel Ahmad, who is regarded close to Uttar Pradesh Minority Welfare Minister Azam Khan, was appointed as chairman of Uttar Pradesh Minority Commission recently. His appointment was questioned by leaders within the Samajwadi Party.
Akhilesh had met Governor Ram Naik on Tuesday evening and sources inform that clearance to the above ordinance was on the agenda of the Chief Minister.

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