The differences of opinion between Chandigarh MP Kirron Kher and city BJP president Sanjay Tandon came to the fore once again as the latter complained to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh over the functioning of the administration in the city. Kher had recently waxed eloquent about the administration, lavishing praise on officers.
Tandon, in a meeting with Singh on Saturday, urged the Home Minister that Punjab Governor and UT Administrator Shivraj V Patil be replaced at the earliest. Tandon stated that there was still Congress raj in the city, with no work getting done. He also told Singh that officials were not working properly and decision-making was at a standstill.
Tandon told Singh that the issue of lal dora, notices to residents of CHB houses, implementation of the MSMED Act and the high penalties being imposed on industrialists and traders had been pending for several years.
Around a week back, Kher, in an interaction with the media on completion of 140 days of her tenure, had praised officers of the administration and the UT Administrator, thanking them for their co-operation in solving the problems of the residents that she took up with them. She stated that the officials had always extended support to her whenever she asked them to get some work done and a lot had been done.
Kher went on to say that when she took up the issue with the administrator, he agreed to approve reduction of VAT on diesel in Chandigarh so that the price of diesel was on a par with Mohali and losses were not suffered by petrol pump owners. The administrator had reportedly rejected this proposal earlier. The administrator also approved allotment of a government house in the city for Kher, a step being taken for the first time.
Kher and Tandon also differ on the issue of setting up of a Metropolitan Council in the city. While Kher has argued that there was no need for having a Metropolitan Council, Tandon favours it. He also raised the issue with the Home Minister, seeking the setting up of a Metropolitan Council in order to have faster and more accountable decision-making in the city. The city BJP had adopted a resolution to this affect which was opposed by Kher.
The BJP had earlier written to Singh about the alleged dictatorial attitude of the administrator when he did not shift the date of the meeting of the Advisory Council, even though Kher had expressed her inability to be in the city on the specified date. Another meeting of the council was then called by the administrator.