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Business News/ News / India/  Delhi water shortage: Atishi asks L-G VK Saxena to suspend Delhi Jal Board CEO over 'criminal negligence'
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Delhi water shortage: Atishi asks L-G VK Saxena to suspend Delhi Jal Board CEO over 'criminal negligence'

In a letter, Atishi urged Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena to take action against officers “who are responsible for the water shortage”. She said a woman died after a violent fight started due to shortage of water supply in the area.

Delhi minister Atishi wrote a letter to Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena on April 14. (HT_PRINT)Premium
Delhi minister Atishi wrote a letter to Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena on April 14. (HT_PRINT)

Delhi minister Atishi requested Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena on Sunday to immediately suspend the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) within 24 hours over "criminal negligence".

In a letter dates April 14, Atishi urged Saxena to take action against officers "who are responsible for the water shortage that has led to the loss of life of a woman in East Delhi".

The Delhi minister said a “shocking" and violent incident happened in the Farsh Bazar/ Bhikam Singh Colony area of East Delhi. She said a women died after a fight started due to shortage of water supply in the areas. The minister held the CEO of the Delhi Jal Board responsible for the incident.

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Her letter read, “For the last six months, the undersigned gave repeated directions (enclosed) to the CEO of Delhi Jal Board and the Chief Secretary to ensure augmentation of water supply, so that there is no shortage of water when the onset of summer happens. However, despite repeated directions, no action has been taken to prevent this water crisis in Delhi."

 

Atishi said that when she had asked for an action-taken-report on the steps being taken by DJB, the CEO sent her a note stating that she would not be given any information regarding the water supply situation in Delhi because the Model Code of Conduct for the Lok Sabha Elections is in force.

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“It is a consequence of this callous inaction of the officers of Delhi Jal Board that today a woman has lost her life in violence due to water shortage. This inaction is tantamount to criminal negligence and cannot be ignored; immediate and exemplary action must be taken against highest level of officers of DJB," Atishi wrote in the letter.

‘Conspiracy to stop funds of Delhi Jal Board’

Atishi also mentioned that a "concerted conspiracy to stop the funds of Delhi Jal Board in the FY 2023-24".

"Non-release of funds by Finance Department, has brought DJB to a standstill for the last 8-10 months. Installation of borewells had been requisitioned in many parts of Delhi; however due to shortage of funds almost none of these borewells was installed. So the crisis that is being faced by people of Delhi, has been artificially created by senior officers of GNCTD [Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi]," Atishi said.

ALSO READ: Delhi water supply disruption: Affected areas and schedule for today. Delhi Jal Board shares full list. Check here

In this regard, she said actions of these officers need to be "investigated and strongest possible action taken against them".

'Action needs to be taken by L-G because...'

In the letter, Atishi further mentioned the order dates August 21, 2023 that stated "that all matters related to Services and Vigilance are in the 'sole discretion' of the Hon'ble LG."

"Whenever the undersigned has written to the Chief Secretary to initiate action against any officer, the Chief Secretary has said that "Services' is outside the purview of the elected government and therefore Minister Incharge cannot given instructions on the same," Atishi said.

ALSO READ: Delhi Jal Board case: Arvind Kejriwal skips ED summons, AAP says, ‘when there is bail from court…’

“So it is clear that whatever action has to be taken, needs to be taken by the Hon'ble LG. Therefore, it is incumbent on the Hon'ble LG to take immediate action against officers who are responsible for the water shortage that has led to the loss of life of a woman in East Delhi," she said.

What has Atishi requested?

Atishi requested L-G Saxena to:

1. Immediately suspend CEO of Delhi Jal Board within 24 hours as this criminal negligence has taken place under his watch.

2. Institute an independent enquiry into the acts of omission and commission of Chief Secretary, as well as officers of Finance Department, Urban Development Department and DJB that have led to DJB being starved of funds in FY 2023-24, and therefore unable to execute essential works like installation of borewells.

3. Initiate a disciplinary action against all officers both in DJB and other departments of GNCTD responsible for non- augmentation of water supply for summers of 2024.

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Published: 14 Apr 2024, 07:29 PM IST
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