Five MLAs from Bhopal have served a breach of privilege notice against a young IAS officer, alleging that he skipped a meeting to which the MLAs were called while the Winter Session of the state Assembly was on.
The Assembly Secretariat has sought a reply from Bhopal Municipal Commissioner Tejaswi Naik within seven days.
The legislators said the commissioner had recently invited them for a meeting over the Smart City project while the
Winter Session of the Assembly was on. The December 7-18 session ended two days before schedule on Wednesday.
When the legislators turned up for the meeting with their inputs for the ambitious project, the municipal commissioner wasn’t present. “He snubbed us by not attending it, though he was in an adjacent room,’’ BJP MLA Vishwas Sarang told The Indian Express.
Three other BJP MLAs — Rameshwar Sharma, Surendranath Singh, and Vishnu Khatri — and Congress MLA Arif Aqueel have also signed the notice. The MLAs claimed that they had left important legislative business in the Assembly to attend the meeting and argued that the commissioner’s conduct amounted to breach of privilege.
Assembly Speaker Sitasharan Sharma will now take a call on whether the matter should be referred to the privilege committee once Naik sends his reply.
The 32-year-old officer said he would present his case in the reply, but refused to share more information.
This isn’t the first time the 2009 batch officer has found himself in the crosshairs of councillors and MLAs. In the past 15 months of his tenure, the municipal commissioner has had several run-ins with legislators. His most high-profile spat was with Deputy Speaker and Congress MLA Rajendra Kumar Singh. Singh had accused Naik of not answering his calls, a charge Sarang and others have also leveled. Naik responded by saying that the deputy speaker wanted some personal favour. While Nail and Singh sorted out their differences, the councillors wanted to move a censure motion against Naik in the corporation’s general board. Mayor Alok Sharma managed to thwart the motion by convincing the councillors to withdraw it.