New Delhi: AAP on Monday launched an attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the appointment of JP Nadda as the Union Health Minister and accused him of "violating even the minimum level of decorum" and "rewarding loyalty above everything else".
AAP has been gunning for Nadda ever since AIIMS Chief Vigilance Officer Sanjeev Chaturvedi was removed from his post in August this year. The party has alleged that Chaturvedi was ousted after Nadda put pressure on his predecessor in the health minister's chair, Harsh Vardhan.
Nadda, a BJP national general secretary and Rajya Sabha MP, was made the Union Health and Family Welfare Minister in the Cabinet reshuffle yesterday.
Questioning Modi's commitment to removing corruption in the light of the new development, AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal said in tweet, "JP Nadda, the man who got Sanjeev Chaturvedi transferred from AIIMS, made health min? So, now Modiji will remove corruption in AIIMS through Nadda?"
Keeping up the attack, AAP leader Yogendra Yadav said that the BJP leader's induction into the Union Cabinet was not a good sign for the country as well as the bureaucracy.
"After Nadda's name was included in the Council of Ministers, the party had in a statement said it isn't a good sign for the country. But later when he was made the health minister, even the minimum benchmark of decorum was crossed," Yadav told a press conference.
"The role played by Nadda in getting the AIIMS CVO removed by creating pressure through writing letters to the then health minister (in the UPA government) Ghulam Nabi Azad and even Vardhan is well-documented in the media," Yadav claimed.
He further alleged that Modi was "known to have tainted ministers in his Cabinet while he was the Chief Minister of Gujarat".
Accusing Modi of "rewarding loyalty above everything else", Yadav said, "The country's PM, knowing all the facts, didn't hesitate to send a person like him (Nadda) to the health ministry, sending out the signal that individual loyalty to the PM comes first (before) everything else."
Terming it a "signal" to the bureaucrats of the country, Yadav said that they will interpret the message to be that "honesty is on one side and observing government orders on the other, failing which is an invitation to trouble".
Chaturvedi was removed as the AIIMS CVO in a controversial manner with the then Health Minister Vardhan saying the step was taken because he did not fulfil the criteria for the appointment.