The relations between the Puducherry government and the office of the Lieutenant Governor hit a rocky patch Tuesday after the swearing-in of three persons, nominated by the Centre, as the members of the Legislative Assembly.
Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi on Tuesday night administered the oath of office to V Saminathan, president of the Puducherry BJP unit, party treasurer KG Shankar and educationist S Selva Ganapathy even as a PIL seeking a stay on the appointment of the three MLAs is reportedly pending before the Madras High Court. The three persons had approached Speaker V Vaithilingam earlier requesting to be sworn-in on Tuesday itself.
Bedi finally administered the oath to the three persons around 8 pm with entry being barred to the media. “Three MLAs nominated by the Government of India to the Legislative Assembly of the Union Territory of Puducherry were sworn in by the Lt. Governor of Puducherry at Raj Nivas on Tuesday,” the Raj Niwas said in a note released to the press.
On Wednesday, Bedi put out a tweet explaining the legal provisions under which the L-G can appoint three MLAs to the Assembly. Under the Union Territories Act, the oath is/can be administered by the Administrator.
Meanwhile, the ruling Congress and the Opposition DMK are readying for protests against the nomination of the MLAs. Apart from a bandh called on July 8 by several pro-Tamil outfits, the Congress released FIR copies of cases pending against the two BJP leaders, The Hindu reported.
Relations between the Puducherry government and the L-G’s office have not been smooth after Bedi took over as administrator of the union territory. Earlier this year, Bedi cancelled a government circular prohibiting the use of social media for official communications seen as a setback for chief minister V. Narayanasamy. Arvind Kejriwal’s Delhi government also experienced severe strain in ties with former Delhi L-G Najeeb Jung.
The introduction of the BJP leaders ensures that the party now has a presence in the Assembly.