Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy is on a protest outside Kiran Bedi's residence.
Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy pulled off an all-nighter and slept on the road outside Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi's residence in the latest case of power struggle between the Union Territory's Congress government and the former IPS officer.
What triggered the protest was Ms Bedi's idea of making wearing helmets compulsory for motorists with immediate effect. Mr Narayanaswamy, however, was against it and wants the rule to be implemented it a phased manner.
Mr Narayanasamy, who began his sit-in on the road outside the Lieutenant Governor's residence last evening, tweeted pictures of him sleeping on the road – with a thin shawl as blanket. The Puducherry assembly speaker, ministers and legislators too spent the night with him. The chief minister is wearing a black shirt and a black veshti.
Mr Narayanasamy is demanding that Kiran Bedi sanction for 39 government proposals, including a free rice scheme.
"It is an obstruction by Kiran Nedi on the instruction of Narendra Modi. This is a conspiracy hatched by the Prime Minister using Kiran Bedi to create day-to-day problems for our government," he told NDTV.
Mr Narayanasamy's action invited a sharp response from Kiran Bedi, who shot off a letter to him, terming his protest "unlawful". "Instead of waiting for my response to your February 7 letter, you have come to Raj Nivas, demanding a reply in this unlawful manner," she said. "This method (sitting in dharna) is unheard of from a person of your position," the Lt Governor said in the letter, which was hand-delivered to the chief minister.
Ms Bedi invited Mr Narayanasamy for a detailed discussion on February 21 at Raj Nivas. The Lt Governor said all the issues Mr Narayanasamy had mentioned in his letter needed examination for a 'considered response' and claimed that nothing was pending at the Raj Nivas, as alleged.
Kiran Bedi, has been at loggerheads with the Puducherry government on various issues. Mr Narayanasamy and the Congress have accused her of delaying clearance to welfare schemes, bypassing the elected government and criticised her weekly field visits.