Puducherry

Privileges committee in Puducherry starts proceedings against officials on SEC issue

The committee holding proceedings against Under Secretary, LAD Giddi Balaram on Tuesday

The committee holding proceedings against Under Secretary, LAD Giddi Balaram on Tuesday   | Photo Credit: T. Singaravelou

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An official responsible for floating an advertisement inviting applications for the post of State Election Commissioner was questioned at the Legislative Assembly

The Assembly Privileges Committee on Tuesday initiated privilege proceedings against officials responsible for floating an advertisement inviting applications for the State Election Commission overruling a resolution of the Assembly.

The Committee, chaired by Deputy Speaker M.N. R Balan, as a first move questioned Under Secretary, Local Administration Department, Giddi Balaram, under whose name the advertisement appeared in newspapers on January 7, for more than 30 minutes at the Legislative Assembly.

A government source told The Hindu that Mr. Balaram had reportedly informed the Committee that he floated the advertisement under instructions from his superiors. The Committee had also decided to summon Director, LAD, G. Malar Kannan. Based on the reply by Mr. Kannan, the committee would decide on summoning other officers, the source said.

The government had appointed former bureaucrat T. M Balakrishnan, last year, as SEC after Speaker V. P Sivakolundhu gave a ruling bestowing power to appoint the election officer with the elected government.

The Speaker, while giving his ruling, had also cancelled a similar advertisement floated allegedly at the behest of Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi for the SEC post.

Challenging the appointment made by the government, the Lt Governor referred the subject to Union Ministry of Home Affairs which in turn directed the Chief Secretary to again start the selection process. The government was of the view that the advertisement issued early this month was a breach of privilege and hence decided to start proceedings against officials.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2020 9:13:19 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/privileges-committee-in-puducherry-starts-proceedings-against-officials-on-sec-issue/article30566952.ece

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