Amid the ongoing tussle between Delhi’s Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Lieutenant General Anil Baijal, Speaker Ram Niwas Goel on Wednesday wrote to the LG urging him to take steps to end the four-month-long impasse between the ministers and the IAS officials in the local administration.
“At the meetings of the House panels, the IAS officers are asked the reason behind them skipping meetings called by ministers. In response, they refer to a related decision of the IAS association in justifying their stand,” he wrote. “Does this not amount to a strike by the officials?” Goel asked. The IAS association has been claiming that they have not suspended work and are merely skipping routine meetings with the ministers as a mark of protest against the alleged assault on Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash.
Prakash was allegedly assaulted by two AAP MLAs at Kejriwal’s residence on the night of February 19 during a meeting. The two MLAs were arrested following the incident. Police have also interrogated Kejriwal and Sisodia over the issue.
In his letter, Goel added that the ongoing agitation of the bureaucrats has brought developmental works in the city to a halt. “Don’t you think the people of Delhi are bring insulted? Being the custodian of the city, you should fulfill your constitutional obligations and end the strike. And I can only hope that the rage among the people does not increase, because if it does, it will not be in your, the city’s or the country’s interest,” the Speaker warned.
In an unprecedented development, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Deputy CM Manish Sisodia, and ministers Gopal Rai and Satyendar Jain are on a sit-in at Baijal’s office, adjoining his official residence, at Civil Lines since Monday evening. The party leaders have also planned a march to Raj Niwas today to extend their support to Kejriwal and company.