Puducherry

Bedi’s appointment fulfils a long-pending demand

Madurai; Tamil Nadu; 12/01/2015. Former IPS Officer Kiran Bedi. Photo; G. Moorthy.   | Photo Credit: G_Moorthy

The appointment of former top police officer Kiran Bedi, perhaps best known for spearheading reforms at Tihar Jail, as Lieutenant Governor of the Union Territory of Puducherry, fulfils a long-aired demand by sections of the polity for having a full-time Lt. Governor.

For close to two years after former Lt. Governor Virendra Kataria, a gubernatorial appointee of the previous UPA regime, was sacked in July, 2014, by the new BJP Government at the Centre, Puducherry was placed under the additional charge of the Lt. Governor of Andaman and Nicobar Islands Lt. Gen. A.K. Singh.

Ms. Bedi’s appointment coincides with a new Congress-led Government coming to power in Puducherry and public expectations can be expected to run high on what lies in store for the overall development of Puducherry.

Spats

Also, given the history of the public spats between Mr. Kataria and the Rangasamy-led Government, and the recent adversarial posturing by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and LG Najeeb Jung, Ms. Bedi’s handling of the power equation with the government would be of keen public interest.

As a former top bureaucrat pointed out, “the balance of power is unique in Puducherry which has an LG, a Legislative Assembly and Council of Ministers headed by the Chief Minister and the Ministry of Home Affairs as the cadre controlling authority.”

Ms. Bedi, meanwhile, told the media in Delhi that she expected to bring her trustworthiness in governance to the mandate of the Lt. Governor of Puducherry.

Various stints

Of the various stints the country’s first woman IPS officer served over a career spanning 35 years before she took the plunge into politics, it is her role as Special Secretary to the Lt. Governor of Delhi in 1998-99 that is likely to serve her in good stead in Puducherry.

She had led the establishment of a citizen interface at the LG office that enabled redressal of grievances pertaining to varied facets of governance.

There is no official word yet on when Ms. Bedi is likely to assume charge. The President of India’s communiqué announcing her appointment had stated that she would “be the Lt. Governor of Puducherry with effect from the date she assumes charges of her office.”


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Printable version | Dec 2, 2021 10:20:03 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/Bedi%E2%80%99s-appointment-fulfils-a-long-pending-demand/article14335229.ece

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