AAP leader Saurabh Bharadwaj (Image: PTI)
Senior IAS officer and special secretary in the Delhi government, Kinny Singh, has accused Services Minister Saurabh Bhardwaj of "coercive behaviour" and requested security for herself.
The ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) termed Singh's allegations as "completely false" and claimed that the officers were being "forced" to make complaints against the ministers of its government.
Singh said that it would be "difficult" for her to attend any "personal meeting" with the services minister, unless "adequate safeguards and appropriate conduct" was ensured.
The officer, special secretary II (services), in an incident report submitted to chief secretary, the Ministry of Home Affairs and LG office, complained against Bhardwaj after a meeting with him and other officers of the services department on May 16.
Singh said she along with other officers went to meet Bhardwaj on May 16 to perform their duty.
"...I have lost trust that my safety and dignity will be ensured whenever called for a personal meeting. Hence, it is submitted that it would be difficult for me to attend any personal meeting with Minister Saurabh Bhardwaj unless adequate safeguards and appropriate conduct is ensured," she mentioned in her report.
Singh has requested for "adequate security" in view of "unexpected coercive behaviour" of the minister.
The AAP alleged that the complaint by the officer was BJP’s "cheap politics" and questioned if anything like it was heard before.
"Bhardwaj is a very decent person. He is so polite even with his adversaries. Obviously, the officers are making such complaints under BJP pressure. The day services comes under us, the same officers could be made to make complaints against chief secretary, LG and BJP politicians but we will not do such cheap politics," the party said in a statement.
However, Singh claimed in her report that the officers, including services secretary Ashish More and deputy secretary Amitabh Joshi, were "completely intimidated" by the behaviour of the minister who was enquiring about files and putting pressure on them to sign on a paper.
"I have been sincerely performing all duties assigned to me as per my work allocation and have been giving time to time information as required by the minister. "Services team has been called for a number of times in the chamber of the minister, all the time we have gone and complied with all directions and despite threats and intimidations we are maintaining working spirit for continuance of public work," Singh wrote in her report.
This is also submitted that all the files requisitioned in writing by the minister (except one which was submitted for Civil Services Board proceedings) were submitted to his secretary on May 16, she said.
Sources in the Delhi government said that Singh had been served a show cause notice to explain her conduct including "dereliction of duty, insubordination and providing unauthorised possession of "sensitive files" to special secretary Y V V J Raj Shekhar despite repeated directions.
"She had knowingly delayed to presentation of report about past CSB meeting minutes to the minister. Her conduct is a matter of record and is available as documentary evidence with the government. All these allegations against the government are an afterthought to save herself and her colleagues from potential disciplinary proceedings," a source said.
More, who was removed hours after a Supreme Court verdict giving executive control to elected AAP government in Delhi over services matters had also submitted a similar incident report to his superiors.
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