The Congress on Wednesday demanded the recall of Puducherry Lt. Governor Kiran Bedi and West Bengal Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi, accusing them of compromising on constitutional propriety. The party also accused the BJP of “denigrating, decimating and abusing” the institution of the governor.
Congress spokesperson Sushmita Dev said that ever since the BJP-led NDA government assumed office, the role of governors appointed by it had been questionable, be it in Arunachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal or Puducherry. Governors are becoming political “puppets for the conspiratorial machinations” of the BJP-RSS, it alleged.
Dev said Bedi had “violated every established norm and tradition in swearing in three defeated BJP candidates as nominated MLAs in the state assembly”. Bedi and Tripathi had compromised the basic tenants of constitutional propriety, she said. “They must be recalled and sacked,” she told reporters.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday had accused Tripathi of acting like “a BJP block president” and “threatening” her. The Raj Bhavan has denied the charges against the governor. The Congress leader alleged that Tripathi displayed a “disrespectful, distasteful and overbearing conduct” towards an “elected woman chief minister”.
“Never in the history of India has the governor acted in such a partisan fashion, insulting and shouting at a chief minister to serve the interests of the ruling political party at the Centre. This is a clear disregard of the Constitution and disrespect of the people’s mandate,” she said.
Dev said in Puducherry one of those nominated as an MLA is V Saminathan, the BJP president of Puducherry. The other two are BJP treasurer K G Shankar and RSS member Selvaganapathy. She said the move was in violation of rules and constitutional provisions. “It once again establishes the manner in which the Lt. Governor of Puducherry is acting as a political puppet, sub-serving the interests of BJP rather than upholding the Constitution of India and well-established laws and procedures,” she said.