Kejriwal Takes Turf War To Modi In Scathing Letter

20/05/2015 1:02 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
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Aam Aadmi Party, or Common Man's Party, leader Arvind Kejriwal takes the oath of office as Delhi's new Chief Minister, in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015. The AAP, headed by the former tax official who had remade himself into a champion for clean government, won 67 of the 70 seats in recent elections. Kejriwal and the party he created routed the country's best-funded and best-organized political machine and dealt an embarrassing blow to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

NEW DELHI— Taking his fight against the LG to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal today asked him to allow the city government to function "independently" even as he accused the Centre of trying to run the Delhi administration.

In a letter to Modi, Kejriwal mentioned the posting and transfers made by Lt Governor Najeeb Jung and said the elected government must have a say about distribution of work to senior officials.

"In Delhi, Central government is trying to run government unconstitutionally through the Lt Governor. Let Delhi government function independently," Kejriwal said in the letter to Modi.

The letter by Kejriwal to the Prime Minister came a day after both he and Jung took their bitter fight to President Pranab Mukherjee, accusing each other of violating the Constitution and overstepping their respective jurisdictions.

The Lt Governor has been maintaining that he has the power to appoint and transfer the bureaucrats and none of his actions has been "unconstitutional" as was being alleged by the AAP government.

Kejriwal had yesterday met Mukherjee along with his deputy Manish Sisodia, who said "LG was functioning as if there is President's Rule in the national capital and there is no elected government here." .

"Despite having a democratically elected government, he (LG) is bypassing the chief minister and ministers and issuing instructions to officers. He is even threatening them with transfers if they do not follow his orders. It is not good for democracy.

"We told the President that we accepted LG's decision to appoint acting Chief Secretary even without consulting us. But after that too, he has been appointing officers bypassing the elected government. He is even interfering in the appointments of secretaries and directly ordering them. Then where is democracy," Sisodia had told reporters after meeting Mukherjee.

Jung had yesterday also met Home Minister Rajnath Singh on the issue and informed him about his stand-off with the AAP government.

The tussle over appointment of Shakuntala Gamlin as acting chief secretary of Delhi had turned into a full-blown war between the AAP government and Jung with Kejriwal alleging that the LG was trying to take over the administration.

Despite Kejriwal's strong opposition, Jung had appointed her to the post on Friday.

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