AGARTALA: Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb has sparked a controversy after he asked civil service officials and executives to work for the people without "worrying about contempt of court" as the government is not run by the court.
Addressing the 26th biennial conference of the Tripura Civil Service Officers' Association in Agartala on Friday, Deb said: "We are a 'by the people government' and not by the court government. The court is for the people and people are not for the court."
He also mentioned that despite repeated caution by his former Chief Secretary on the ground of contempt of court, his Cabinet took the decision for the ad hoc promotion of the government officials, which is a long-pending issue in the Supreme Court.
"Even the Chief Secretary used to say this cannot happen. But I was firm that it is a Cabinet decision and has to happen. How long can I keep them sitting? It was injustice toward those who go for retirement without getting their due promotion. They feared it would be contempt of the court as if contempt of the court is like a tiger. I am a tiger, the person who runs the government and is the main person in the party in power and possesses the total power," the CM said.
Deb also quoted former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee that the Court is for implementation of the laws which are made by the Legislature.
He mentioned that the state's previous Chief Secretary was disposed of his duties because he feared "contempt of court".
"I have been threatened that it will be contempt of the court. The previous Chief Secretary was telling me that he will be jailed under contempt of court and so I have given him farewell and let him go."
Reacting to the comments, Trinamool Congress general secretary Abhishek Banerjee on Sunday uploaded a video clip of Deb's speech on Twitter, claiming that Deb mocked judiciary and democracy as well.
"@BjpBiplab is a DISGRACE to the entire nation! He shamelessly mocks Democracy, MOCKS the JUDICIARY and seemingly gets away with it! Will the SUPREME COURT take cognizance of his comments that reflect such grave disrespect?" Banerjee tweeted on Sunday.