Strict action should be taken against the officers who illegally followed BJP’s orders, says Delhi CM.
New Delhi: Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday said the BJP will face the heat from the poor for “deliberately cancelling ration cards in Delhi” and warned of strict action against officers who followed the Centre’s orders.
Mr Kejriwal’s reaction came after Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA Gulab Singh tweeted a video which showed a woman from Matiala constituency pleading with lieutenant-governor Anil Baijal urging him to provide her a ration card — which was cancelled — so that she could feed her two children.
Sharing the tweet, Mr Kejriwal said: “The BJP will face the heat from the poor for pressurising the officers to deliberately cancel ration cards. Strict action should be taken against the officers who illegally followed BJP’s orders.”
On Sunday, the Delhi government ordered the restoration of 2.53 lakh ration cards in the national capital and warned officers that they would be personally responsible for starvation deaths of eligible beneficiaries.
Between July and August, the Delhi government claimed that over 2.50 lakh ration cards were cancelled allegedly by Delhi’s Food Commissioner despite strong objections by food and civil supplies minister Imran Hussain.
The matter has turned into yet another flashpoint between the AAP government and the Delhi bureaucracy, and by extension the Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled Centre, which oversees much of the capital’s administration. The political squabble assumes greater urgency in the wake of the starvation deaths of three sisters, aged between two years and eight years, in Delhi on July 25, leading to questions about the Capital’s welfare delivery system.
Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal had earlier alleged that the food commissioner — who answers to the L-G — cancelled the ration cards without proper verification.
And in his order to food supply officers to restore the ration cards, Food and Civil Supplies Minister Imran Hussain has said, “Any death occurring in Delhi due to starvation/non-availability of ration to the otherwise eligible beneficiaries whose card has been cancelled without proper verification, shall also invite criminal action besides disciplinary action against the concerned FSO/FSI [food supply officer or food supply inspector] for which they shall be personally responsible.”