Updated: September 10, 2021 7:36:13 am
A day after Haryana Home and Urban Local Bodies Minister Anil Vij suspended a superintending engineer of the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG) for “misconduct”, the MCG engineering wing and workers’ unions went on a pen-down strike on Thursday and demanded that his suspension be revoked. Officials also threatened to go on a strike from Friday if this is not done.
Vij on Wednesday had said that the mayor told him she had sought some answers from the superintending engineer concerned, but he had walked out of the meeting instead of answering the questions. “This is a very serious matter… in a way, it is contempt of the House. I have issued directions for his suspension with immediate effect,” the minister had said.
The SE, Ramesh Sharma, had been temporarily relieved of his duties earlier after the alleged misconduct with mayor Madhu Azad. The mayor said that last week, she had asked the SE to visit two lanes in ward number 22 after a complaint from residents related to sewers.
“He said he was in an important meeting at that time. Four days later, in the meeting, when I enquired about the matter, he said he did not visit the site and that he did not feel the need to. When I asked him to lower his voice, he started misbehaving and then walked out of the meeting. I gave a letter to the Minister and apprised him of the issue. Officials should respect dignity of the office and chair, and works of the public should not be affected,” she said.
Ramesh Sharma said his suspension had been unfair. “I have not been heard or allowed to present my case. I have not committed any wrong. On September 6, during a review of consultants, unparliamentary language was used against me. It was not a house meeting, as it is being represented. The mayor’s son and spouses of councillors were also present. The mayor had asked me to visit ward 22 for some work, but I had a meeting with the CEO of GMDA, where senior officials were present that day. I had informed the mayor that due to this reason, I could not visit and had deputed an executive engineer to go to the area.”
Officials of the engineering wing, along with members of the Nagar Palika Karamchari union and Gurgaon engineering technical association and contactors’ union, went on a pen-down strike and raised slogans on Thursday.
MCG chief engineer Thakur Lal Sharma said: “The suspension has been unfair and unconstitutional. The SE should have been given an opportunity to present his side. These are pressure tactics by some councilors. The union has given a call for a strike if the suspension is not revoked.”
Naresh Malkat, secretary of the Nagar Palika Karmachari union, Gurgaon, said: “No official work was done as we are on a pen-down strike today. We demand that the suspension of the SE be revoked. If it is not withdrawn, we will go on a strike from Friday. We have informed officials of the same.”
Meanwhile, MCG Commissioner Mukesh Kumar Ahuja issued an order to all branch heads of the civic body Thursday, directing them to maintain decorum in the office. “You are hereby directed to maintain proper decorum in the office and to pay all regards/respects to all elected representatives including every member parliament, member legislator, mayor, senior deputy mayor, deputy mayor, and all members of Municipal Corporation,” the order read.
The order also stated that it must be “ensured that meetings concerning the transaction of business of the corporation and for other administrative matters be attended by members of the meetings by following provisions of Haryana Municipal Corporation Act, 1994”.
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