LG Vs AAP: Delhi LG Chides Kejriwal For Skipping Oct 2 Event

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By: Alok Singh | New Delhi 
Updated: 03 October, 2022 8:33 am IST

Opening a new front of confrontation with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Delhi lieutenant governor Vinai Kumar Saxena on Monday lambasted chief minister Arvind Kejriwal for not attending the commemoration of Gandhi Jayanti at Raj Ghat.

In a letter to Kejriwal, Saxena termed the AAP supremo’s decision to skip the celebrations on October 2 as “utter disregard” of the established practices.

October 2 also marks the birth anniversary of former prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri, which is celebrated at Vijay Ghat. It was also skipped by Kejriwal.

On its part, the Delhi government has said that Kejriwal was in Gujarat to address a “huge rally” on October 2. The party also sought to point out that LG Saxena’s reaction was promoted by the massive support for AAP in the BJP-ruled state that goes to poll later this year.

“Dear Kejriwal Ji… It is with a deep sense of pain, regret and disappointment that I draw your attention towards the utter disregard displayed by you and the government headed by you towards the commemoration of Gandhi Jayanti and the Jayanti of Bharat Ratna, Lal Bahadur Shastri Ji yesterday (October 2),” the LG wrote.

He further said that he was constrained to mention that neither Kejriwal nor any of his ministers were present at Raj Ghat or Vijay Ghat on Sunday, even as the President, Vice President, Prime Minister, Lok Sabha Speaker and a host of other top political leaders of all parties, representatives of foreign missions in India and common residents of Delhi gathered to pay homage to Bapu and Shastri Ji.

“While the Deputy Chief Minister was perfunctorily present there for a few minutes, he did not deem the occasion fit enough for him to stay the course,” he rued.

He pointed out that the invitation to the President and Vice President was extended while keeping CM Kejriwal in the loop. “In accepting the invite from the Delhi government, the President’s secretariat had clearly apprised the chief minister through his additional sectary that it was expected of the chief minister to be present at the program and receive the President at Vijay Ghat,” the letter reads.

He continued: “This is not only highly improper but prima facie amounts to a deliberate breach of protocol indicative of disrespect and insult to the President of India the highest Constitutional Authority of the Republic.”

An infuriated AAP hit back at the LG, alleging that he wrote the letter on the instructions of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“It is important to understand the reason behind LG’s letter. The CM addressed a very massive rally in a tribal area of Gujarat against empty chairs in PM’s program in Ahmedabad just two days back. PM is livid. This letter has been written by the LG on PM’s instructions,” said the Delhi government in a statement.

Lieutenant governor Saxena and the AAP government are already engaged in a prolonged slugfest over alleged irregularities in the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy involving Manish Sisodia, the Delhi deputy chief minister and AAP’s second-in-command.

In August, Sisodia’s official residence was searched by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in August in the connection with the liquor policy scam, which the BJP alleges runs into hundreds of crores.

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