Haryana Ministers speak out against Khattar, again ; Is it a good sign for CM ?
Ministers speak out against Khattar, again
Chandigarh : It’s Manohar Lal Khattar versus his Cabinet once again. Haryana ministers, who met BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya after the Budget session on Thursday, reportedly alleged they were “suffocated” by the “dictatorial” Chief Minister, who wanted to “control the government”, denying them any role.
Sources said Vijayvargiya called a meeting of the Haryana Cabinet, including Khattar, at Haryana Niwas for a feedback on government functioning. He was told by angry ministers that the officers did not pay heed to them as instructed by the CM. As it was Health Minister Anil Vij’s birthday, a small party was organised. Far from being pleased, Vij remarked wryly: “What’s the point of this celebration when there is a bitter taste in the mouth already?” He is said to be upset with the CM over “interference” in his department.
While Finance Minister Capt Abhimanyu complained, “We are treated as nobody”, OP Dhankar, Agriculture Minister, pointed out that it was the Chief Minister’s office (CMO) that held all powers and that senior officers entertained instructions from the CM’s secretariat only. He accused the CM of instructing DCs and police chiefs to abstain from meetings called by ministers while on a tour.
At a meeting with party general secretary Dr Anil Jain at Surajkund in May last year, when some ministers had criticised the Chief Minister’s “style of functioning’, Khattar was not there. This time, the Chief Minister was present at the meeting when attacked.
Kavita Jain, Women and Child Development Minister, reportedly complained that files were first cleared by the Chief Minister and then brought to her for final signatures. “We have been reduced to robots,” she is quoted to have said. Industries Minister Vipul Goel accused the Chief Minister of “weakening” the government with his dictatorial ways.
Minister Ram Bilas Sharma lamented that little had changed despite the leadership having been approached earlier in the past.
Vijayvargiya also interacted with party office-bearers, Members of Legislative Assembly and ministers in the Chief Minister’s presence. Almost all complained that party workers felt ignored as they had no say in jobs or transfers.