The controversy over nomination of three MLAs in Puducherry snowballed on Thursday with Chief Minister V Narayanasamy scheduled to meet President Pranab Mukherjee over the “illegal” action, as state Lt. Governor Kiran Bedi strongly defended her move.
Naryanasamy, who is in Delhi, said the nomination of three MLAs “by the central government” was not in accordance with the provisions of the Union Territories Act, 1963, and the rules of business.
“There is a provision to nominate three people but it has to be done by the state government and not by the central government directly,” Narayanasamy said.
“We will be submitting a memorandum to the President on this issue, saying that the nomination itself is illegal. The central government cannot usurp the powers of the state. There are also criminal records against two of those nominated,” he added.
Narayanasamy said he will also meet Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi on Friday.
Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said in New Delhi that Bedi has been at loggerheads with V. Narayanasamy and the elected Congress government from the beginning.
He said the appointment of three MLAs — V. Saminathan, President of the Puducherry BJP unit, party Treasurer K.G. Shankar and educationist S. Selva Ganapathy — has been done without consulting the Chief Minister.
Even in Parliament the President nominates members on the basis of the recommendation by the central government, he said.
Bedi took to Twitter to justify her action and cited provisions of the Government of Union Territories Act in this regard.
“Here is the Law under which 3 MLAs were nominated by GOI (Government of India) and I as an LG (Lt. Governor) administered the Oath,” Bedi said in a tweet.
One of the provisions cited by her said that three members can take oath before the LG or a person appointed by him/her for the purpose.
“Since when is application of Law a ‘murder of democracy’?
“See the law. Central government has the power to Nominate and LG has the power of oath giving..!,” Bedi added.
“I am an agent of law, I am working according to that. Cabinet came to me asking why are you meeting people? Why solving civic problems? They said you are supposed to be a rubber stamp,” she told reporters.