Lucknow: The ongoing feud between the Uttar Pradesh government and Raj Bhawan came to the fore once again with senior minister Azam Khan on Wednesday expressing displeasure over the Governor delaying assent to a bill concerning urban local bodies.
"The bill making mayors answerable in cases of financial irregularities is pending...It is very wrong if Raj Bhawan gives patronage to those indulging in embezzlement," Azam, who holds the key portfolios of parliamentary affairs and urban development said.
"There are numerous complaints (of financial irregularities) in local bodies because of which we had to enact law as we wanted to curb corruption," the senior Samajwadi Party leader said.
Alleging that the delay caused was because all mayors belonged to BJP, Azam said there was no provision in the existing law to make mayors answerable in case of embezzlement.
"If the Prime Minister of the country is answerable, the ministers of the Central government are answerable, then why not mayors," he said.
He went on to say that if Raj Bhawan had any doubts about the bill, they could have called him or the secretary concerned.
The SP leader, who has in the past made unsavoury comments on Raj Bhawan, asked as to why the Governor was always in an angry mood.
"Buzurg toh shant hote hain...Gussa jawani ki akad hoti hai (the elderly are quiet, anger is a trait of youth)," he said.
The Akhilesh Yadav government and the Governor have also differed on the appointment of a new Lokayukta with the file recommending the name of retired judge Ravindra Singh Yadav, having moved back and forth nearly half a dozen times between the two factions.
The state Assembly had passed a bill last month to amend the Lokayukta Act, dropping Allahabad High Court Chief Justice from the selection committee to pave the way for Yadav's appointment as Lokayukta, since the Chief Justice had expressed reservations over Singh's proximity to the ruling Samajwadi Party.
The Uttar Pradesh Lokayukta and Up-Lokayukta (Amendment) Bill, 2015 passed hurriedly on the last day of the monsoon session of the state legislature is still awaiting Governor Ram Naik's nod of approval.
The Governor has also refused to clear five names for Legislative Council membership in the nominated members category and sought details about them from the state government twice.