L-G hiding facts on rice, medical admission: CM

V. Narayanasamy. Photo: S.S. Kumar  

Chief Minister V. Narayanasamy has accused Lt. Governor Kiran Bedi of ‘hiding’ certain facts while issuing statements on medical admission controversy and rice distribution issue.

Addressing a press conference here on Tuesday, the Chief Minister said Ms. Bedi had failed to openly acknowledge the fact that the Central Bureau of Investigation had cleared all charges she had levelled against senior officials involved in the admission process.

Recently, the Madras High Court while imposing fine on private medical colleges for committing irregularities, did not find any wrong-doing by the officials. The government had always maintained its stand that the admission procedure followed by the Centralised Admission Committee (Centac) was proper and as per rules.

The government was in favour of taking action against the private colleges if they were found guilty of wrong-doing in admission process by not admitting the students recommended by Centac.

The government’s views on the issue was communicated to the Medical Council of India. However, it was the Lt. Governor who recommended a CBI probe against government officials overseeing the admission process. The agency closed the case as it found that the officials were not guilty, the Chief Minister said.

“The court recently gave its judgement imposing fine on the colleges for irregularities in the admission process. Ms. Bedi was quick to say the court judgment was a Diwali gift to the people of the Union Territory,” he said.

The Chief Minister sought to know from the Lt. Governor whether making false complaints against the officials and harassing them was any sort of Diwali gift.

“It is Ms. Bedi who is giving false information to the public. She has never acknowledged the closure of a case recommended by her,” Mr. Narayanasamy said.

Responding to the Lt. Governor’s statement that the judiciary and the Centre had approved her stand on direct benefit transfer (DBT) mode for implementing welfare schemes, the Chief Minister said the court has not given any final judgement on DBT for free rice scheme.

“I have appealed against the single Bench order on transfer of money instead of providing free rice. And the case is likely to come up next month. How can someone say that the judiciary has upheld her decision when the appeal is still pending,” the Chief Minister said.

Stating that free rice was one of the commitments given by the party during elections and it was a policy matter of the government, the Chief Minister said “the Lt. Governor has no right to interfere in policy matters.”

The Chief Minister said it was also wrong on her part to state that the Centre had concurred with her stand. The former Union Minister for Consumer Affairs Food and Public Distribution, late Ram Vilas Paswan, was in favour of distributing rice, he said. “He clearly said if the government wanted to distribute rice it was free to do so. We even asked the Minister to supply rice through the FCI,” he said.

On Lt. Governor’s statement that distribution of rice would lead to corruption, the Chief Minister said majority of the States, including Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala, were distributing rice through public distribution outlets. “So does it mean the distribution process in these States is corrupt,” he added.

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Printable version | Nov 27, 2020 12:55:55 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/l-g-hiding-facts-on-rice-medical-admission-cm/article32848895.ece

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