Lieutenant Governor threatened officials to issue an order, says U.T. Chief Minister
Blaming Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi for the closure of Swadeshi Cotton Mills and Bharathi Textile Mills, Chief Minister V. Narayanasamy on Wednesday said Ms. Bedi had “threatened” officials to issue an order closing the mills, without the knowledge of the elected government.
Addressing a press conference along with Minister for Industries M.O.H.F. Shahjahan at the Legislative Assembly, the Chief Minister said as was the case with Anglo French Textiles, the government forwarded a file to the Lt. Governor, seeking financial sanction for ₹1 crore to provide layoff salaries to workers in Swadeshi and Bharathi Mills. Instead of giving sanction, she directly sent the file to the management of the mills, directing their closure.
“The government did not receive any communication on the closure of the mills. She sent the file directly to the department concerned and threatened the official to issue the closure order,” the Chief Minister said.
The Lt. Governor was duty bound to refer subjects that she had differences with the government to the President.
She has no right to take unilateral decisions, the Chief Minister added.
Whether it was her intervention to close down AFT Mills or reluctance to accord pay sanction to teachers of aided schools and workers of various societies, the Chief Minister said the Lt. Governor’s sole intention was to bring disrepute to the elected government.
“The government is only answerable to the workers and teachers. Her decisions are aimed at tarnishing the image of the government, with an intention to deny a good name to the Congress government,” he said, adding, “The time will soon come to put an end to such acts.”
A verification of files related to the mills and payment of salaries by anyone, including the Prime Minister or the Home Minister, will reveal the style of functioning of the Lt. Governor, the Chief Minister said.
Questioning the BJP’s criticism of his government on the closure of the mills, the Chief Minister said the Lt. Governor was appointed by the BJP-led government at the Centre.
“The BJP has double standards. If the party was keen on the revival of the mills, then it should have prevailed upon the Lt. Governor to accept the government’s demand to provide salaries, instead of closing it down,” he said.