CHENNAI: The tussle between Lt Governor of Puducherry Kiran Bedi and the Union Territory Legislature has reached the Madras High Court with G Theva Neethi Dhas, Lt. Governor’s secretary moving the Madras High Court to quash a notice dated April 5 of the Assembly secretary asking why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against him.
Justice M Duraiswamy, before whom the petition came up for hearing on Monday, ordered notice to authorities concerned returnable by June 8.
According to petitioner, the Puducherry chief secretary transferred R Chandrasekaran, the Commissioner of Puducherry Municipality. The order was allegedly issued at the instance of Speaker while the Lt Governor was away in Delhi. When the matter was taken up with Bedi, she replied through email on the same day to the petitioner that the order should not be given effect to. Accordingly, petitioner wrote to the chief secretary to keep the order in abeyance.
However, treating this as abetting the disobedience of his order transferring Chandrasekaran, the Deputy Speaker issued notice to the petitioner asking him to appear on April 5, when another notice was issued asking why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against him.
Petitioner contended that merely communicating the orders of the Lt Governor to the Chief Secretary, which he was bound to do, does not amount to contempt of the House. The proceedings are smocked by mala fide and liable to be quashed, he added.