Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy’s protest, demanding the ouster of Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi, entered its third day on Sunday, as the former continued his sit-in near Bedi’s official residence.
Narayanasamy, who has been engaged in a long-standing feud with Bedi over the past years, has accused her of interfering in the government’s decisions and creating hurdles in developmental works through her “undemocratic style of functioning”.
Speaking to NDTV, the chief minister said he has been demanding Bedi’s removal since 2019 and had staged a similar dharna outside her residence, and has now hit the streets as the situation has “peaked”.
— V.Narayanasamy (@VNarayanasami) January 10, 2021
“She is now returning files, overruling the decision of the cabinet, overruling the decision of the minister. This is not the job of the Lieutenant Governor…she has no independent power or authority,” he told NDTV, adding that Bedi considers herself “the constitution” and thus has no respect for the law book.
Citing a recent example, Narayansamy accused the Lt Governor of cutting down the government’s Pongal gift of ₹1,000 to ₹200 and stalling other welfare measures.
“Continuance of Dr Kiran Bedi here will hamper the growth of the development of Puducherry. She is affecting the fundamental rights of the people of the state. It has been her attitude right from the beginning, even when she was Delhi police commissioner,” NDTV quoted him as saying.
The chief minister who has been staging a dharna on Anna Salai, just close to the Lt Governor’s house, has been joined by leaders including the Puducherry Congress chief, MLAs and leaders from the CPI and CPI(M). He was denied to stage protest outside Bedi’s official residence in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Narayansamy had earlier accused Bedi of blocking welfare schemes like the free rice schemes, assistance to students, developmental programmes for fishermen and jobs for youth.