The stand-off between Puducherry chief minister V Narayanasamy and the Lt Governor Kiran Bedi continues on a second day on Thursday.
The chief minister had begun a dharna with his cabinet ministers on Wednesday outside Raj Nivas, demanding that Dr Bedi accord a sanction for 39 government proposals, including a free rice scheme. Congress and DMK MLAs are also participating in the protest outside the Raj Nivas, the official office cum residence of the Lt Governor. Sporting black shirts, they squatted on the road outside Raj Nivas, protesting against her 'negative stand' in rejecting files on various matters sent to her for approval.
CM Narayanasamy had told reporters that they took strong exception to the "continued rejection of government proposals to ameliorate the lot of the poor and have-nots".
Lt Governor Kiran Bedi replied to their protest saying that the ministers had levelled unfounded allegations against her. She also said that the MLAs and CM have turned from lawmakers to lawbreakers.
"It is sad to see when a CM sends a letter to Lt Governor and within a week demands a reply by force of a ‘Dharna’/ blockade of Raj Nivas. He also makes unfounded allegations, misleading people in Puducherry. He openly dares violation of MV Act on wearing of helmets to prevent fatal accidents.
Today, Raj Nivas was totally surrounded by CM and his agitators. None of us could move out or visitors could come in. Also, the staff too was blocked from returning to the office.
This is an absolutely unlawful situation of lawmakers turned law-breakers. We are not sure of how the situation will be tomorrow either," she said.
She also said she wanted to meet the chief minister on February 21.
However, the chief minister has remained unyielding calling the Dharna a movement against dictatorship and said that he will only end the protest if De Bedi approves the cabinet's files.
The dharna that took place last night.
"We are sitting in Dharna in a peaceful manner in a Gandhian way to highlight the autocratic manner of functioning of Dr Bedi. I wrote several letters to adminstrators but she did not approve at all of our schemes. Let the administrators decide on all those things and hence there is nothing to be discussed on Februray 21.
If she approves her files we will withdraw our dharna.
She (Kiran Bedi) has no power at all, she has to only be a post office and sign papers which have been sent by council of ministers, she has no right to touch cabinet decisions, she is vetoing decisions. She is being encouraged by PM to create problems for our government," he said.