New Delhi [India], July 22 (ANI): Amid an ongoing tussle, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday skipped the weekly meeting called by Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena, according to sources.
Aam Aadmi Party sources alleged that the LG had "skipped" a similar meeting on July 8.
Responding to the claims by the party, the LG office sources said that Saxena had not "skipped" the meeting on the said date, rather he was in Jaipur to attend the Northern Zonal Council Meeting.
"Delhi LG convenes such meetings. He doesn't need to 'skip' them. If at all, LG will cancel such meetings. Besides, LG had not 'skipped' the meeting. He was in Jaipur that day to attend the Northern Zonal Council Meeting. Dy CM Manish Sisodia was also there," said the LG office sources.
This comes amid simmering tensions between the Delhi Chief Minister and the LG over some issues for quite some time.
Recently, after the Delhi Lieutenant Governor denied permission for Kejriwal's Singapore visit to attend the World Cities Summit, the AAP convener said he differs with the LG's advice and would go ahead with the visit.
Notably, Saxena also recommended a CBI probe into the alleged violations of the Arvind Kejriwal-led government's contentious new excise policy including "deliberate and gross procedural lapses" made by Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia to "provide post tender undue benefits to liquor licensees."
The LG office said that Sisodia also extended "undue financial favours" to the liquor licensees much after the tenders had been awarded and thus caused huge losses to the exchequer.
Sisodia's role is under the scanner for alleged deliberate and gross procedural lapses which provided undue benefits to the tender process for liquor licensees for the year 2021-22, officials in the Lieutenant-Governor's office told ANI.
The excise policy was passed by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi Cabinet in the middle of the deadly Delta wave of Covid pandemic in 2021.
However, the Delhi CM dismissed the allegations and said that the Centre "cannot" see AAP rising to the national level and thus is "resorting to such measures".
"We're not scared of jails, not scared of the noose. They have made several cases against our people. AAP has been growing since its win in Punjab. They cannot see us rise to a national level thus they are resorting to such measures. But nothing will stop us," Kejriwal said.
A report on July 8 by the Chief Secretary established prima facie violations of GNCTD Act 1991, Transaction of Business Rules (ToBR) 1993, Delhi Excise Act 2009, and Delhi Excise Rules 2010.
The report indicates substantively financial quid pro quo at the top political level and that the Delhi excise policy was implemented with the sole aim of benefitting private liquor barons for financial benefits to individuals at the highest rungs of the government leading up to Manish Sisodia.
The minister in charge of the Excise Department, Manish Sisodia took and got executed, major decisions/actions in violation of the statutory provisions and the notified Excise Policy that had huge financial implications, officials at the LG office said.
Sisodia's role is under the scanner for alleged deliberate and gross procedural lapses which provided undue benefits to the tender process for liquor licensees for the year 2021-22, officials in the Lieutenant-Governor's office told ANI. (ANI)