Row over Town Planner’s posting in Local Govt Dept - Mandi Gobindgarh News

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Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Row over Town Planner’s posting in Local Govt Dept

Row over Town Planner’s posting in Local Govt Dept

Rajmeet Singh

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25

Posting of a Municipal Town Planner (MTP) in Local Government Department has brought the Local Government Minister face-to-face with the bureaucracy, attracting intervention by the Chief Minister’s Office.

Additional Town Planner (ATP) SS Bindra was given the charge of MTP in the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation by the Commissioner, Ludhiana Municipal Corporation, violating the “rules of business”, which specify the powers vested in the CM, minister incharge and Administrative Secretary regarding various decisions, including transfers and allotting additional charge to an official.

It is learnt that the ATP was given additional charge of the MTP by the Commissioner on orders from Mayor, Ludhiana MC, Balkar Sidhu, who is said to be close to Food and Civil Supplies Minister Bharat Bhushan Ashu, who is an MLA from Ludhiana (West) Assembly segment. However, Ashu did not respond to calls.

A senior official in the department said there was nothing wrong in giving additional charge as party leaders often demanded officials of their choice to be posted on particular stations, but prior permission of the sanctioning authority (minister-incharge) should have been taken.

Sources said Local Government Minister Brahm Mohindra brought the case of the Commissioner exercising his powers defined in the Standing Orders under the “Rules of Business” to give additional charge of MTP to the ATP. However, Mohindra refused to comment on the issue.

Taking a serious note, the Chief Minister, prior to leaving for foreign tour, not only cancelled the transfer but also told officials to exercise powers and duties as defined in the standing orders. Citing the Chief Minister’s orders, Principal Secretary, Local Government, A Venu Prasad has cancelled the transfer orders.

Last month, the Local Government Minister had written a strong-worded letter to Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh against large-scale transfers undertaken by a former Director, Local Government, in violation of the standing orders, during the period when the minister was recuperating at a private hospital after surgery.

A senior Congress leader said it was not only Congress MLAs who were at the receiving end of the powerful bureaucrats in their own government, but ministers also face the ire of babus.

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