New Delhi: The ongoing tussle between Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Lt Governor Najeeb Jung escalated on Wednesday after the latter annulled all bureaucratic postings done in the last four days by the Aam Aadmi Party government.
In a letter to Kejriwal, the LG wrote that only he has "constitutional power" to do such transfers and postings.
“The power to appoint and to transfer, from steno to IAS officers, is with the LG,” Jung wrote in his letter.
In the letter, the LG also challenged AAP government's order to bureaucrats not to follow his directives without getting approval from CM or any other minister.
The tussle over posting and transfer of bureaucrats had reached President's doors yesterday after both Kejriwal and Jung met Pranab Mukherjee.
Kejriwal today also wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and accused his government of trying to run the administration in the national capital.
The Delhi CM charged in the letter that the Central government is trying to rule Delhi through the Lt Governor.
Kejriwal has accused Jung of interfering in the working of his elected government.
Emerging after meeting Mukherjee along with Kejriwal, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia had said yesterday: "We had a good meeting with the President. We told him that the LG is trying to run Delhi the way he did during President's Rule."
"We told him that the LG is issuing direction to officers bypassing the Chief Minister and threatening them. If this goes on, where will democracy be?"
Sisodia and Kejriwal informed the President that despite their objections, Jung insisted on appointing Shakuntala Gamlin as acting chief secretary. "We later approved (her name) ... but now (Jung) is interfering in the appointment of secretaries too."
On Tuesday, the AAP government named Arvind Ray, an IAS officer removed by the Lt Governor from the post of secretary (home), as the secretary (general administrative department).
The post of secretary (GAD) was earlier held by Anindo Majumdar, who was on Monday locked out of his office at the Delhi Secretariat on Kejriwal's orders for following Jung's fiat to appoint Gamlin as acting chief secretary on May 15.
It was Gamlin's elevation which dramatically triggered the worst confrontation between Jung and the AAP government that stormed to power in February.
The Kejriwal government has accused Gamlin of lobbying for power companies.
On Monday, Jung rejected the appointment of Rajendra Kumar as the principal secretary (services). Later, the Delhi government said it won't pay heed to what he (Jung) had said as it was "unconstitutional".
Meanwhile, in shot in the arm for the AAP, senior lawyers Indira Jaising and Rajeev Dhavan criticised Jung, with one of them saying he had exceeded his authority.
The two lawyers submitted their legal opinion to the Kejriwal government on its request following the tussle over the posting of Delhi bureaucrats.
Meanwhile, hours after Jung annulled all bureaucratic postings done in the last four days by the AAP government, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia today wrote to the former asking him what provisions under Constitution allow him to issue directions to his government.
Sisodia, in a letter to Jung, has sought information on the provisions under Constitution, GNCT Act and TBR which provide the latter power to issue directions to Delhi government.
Sisodia also took to Twitter and rebuffed reports which have claimed that 45 officers have gone on leave in protest against the government.
“Some media channels are showing that 45 officers have gone on leave in protest. Delhi government has not received any leave application from any officer. If the TV channels have an access to such applications then we request them to send them to us.” Sisodia tweeted.
(With Agency inputs)