A high-tension political drama in the capital that entered its eighth day amid increasing national attention may end soon as Union home minister Rajnath Singh has asked Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal to resolve the stand-off with Arvind Kejriwal-led government at the earliest.
It was for the first time that the Centre commented on the keenly-watched issue, when Singh told Outlook that the situation in Delhi was unfortunate and it shouldn’t have happened. “It’s the first time in the history of independent India that a chief minister has sat on a dharna against the bureaucracy. Such a thing should not happen,” the home minister said.
Singh denied that the bureaucrats were on any kind of a strike and not
cooperating with the AAP government led by Kejriwal. “How did the budget happen if the bureaucrats were not working,” he asked.
The minister said the people of Delhi were “suffering” because of the situation. “The question that AAP government needs to answer is ‘Loktantr mein kaun bada hai? Lok ya tantr? (Who is bigger in a democracy? People or the government?),” he added.
Kejriwal and his senior Cabinet colleagues have been sitting on a sit-in in
LG’s office since June 11. Deputy CM Manish Sisodia and PWD minister Satyendra Jain had to be taken to the hospital from the site after their health parameters deteriorated ahead of the strike entering the second week. While Jain was hospitalised on Sunday, Sisodia was shifted on Monday.
The AAP has, of late, shown signs of softening, too: Sisodia called for a meeting of all stakeholders to end the impasse. The Delhi High Court is also hearing the matter and questioned the Kejriwal government on Monday as to who cleared the sit-in at LG’s office.
The demands of the AAP administration include an end to the four-month-old “strike” by the city-state’s IAS officers against whom “action” has to be taken, besides the L-G’s approval to a proposal to delivery rations at the doorsteps of the families.