Haryana's Secretary of Administrative Reforms Pradip Kasni recently raised a red flag over the appointments of five senior officials by the state's Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, on Sunday. Not only were these appointments made within hours of the BJP's nominee Kaptan Singh Solanki taking oath as governor, but what was really odd was that the oath-taking ceremony was held at the chief minister's residence, NDTV reported.
In a rather bold step, Kasni has refused to sign the appointment letters of the two Information Commissioners and three Right to Service Commissioners, stating that due procedure was not followed. The bureaucrat's defiance is being likened to that of Ashok Khemka, another IAS officer known to frequently confront political leaders.
Also read: 10 things you should know about Ashok Khemka
Commissioners are usually sworn in by the governor, and the BJP stated that Hooda should have waited for Solanki to take charge to get his permission and to appoint the new officers. "The chief minister invited people home and had them take oath on a holiday. This is completely unconstitutional. On the one hand, a new governor is taking oath, and on the other hand, people are being invited home for the oath-taking ceremony," BJP leader Anil Vij told NDTV.
On his part, the chief minister insists he was authorised by outgoing governor Jagannath Pahadia to make the appointments, states the report. However, if challenged, the appointments could be cancelled.