Aam Aadmi Party has defended itself in the raging ‘office of profit’ controversy by accusing that both BJP and congress had practices of appointing legislative members as parliamentary secretaries. AAP also claimed that their MLAs were not drawing salary or any other benefits from the government.
21 MLAs of AAP are facing disqualification after President Pranab Mukherjee refused to give his assent to a legislation seeking to protect the legislators from disqualification.
These 21 MLAs were appointed as parliament secretaries, by the Delhi government last year. It has sparked of a major feud between AAP and the Centre all over again.
AAP spokesperson Raghav Chadha alleged that it was the BJP who brought a Bill exempting two offices from ‘office of profit’ in 1997.
” In 1997, Nanda Kishore Garg, a BJP lawmaker was appointed as a parliament secretary, by then Delhi chief minister Sahib Singh Verma. Shiela Dixit of Congress appointed Ajay Maken as a parliamentary secretary in 1999. She has appointed Mukesh Sharma and Lal Singh Sahni in the same post in 2012 and 2013 respectively,” told Mr Chadha, showing the documents.
He also pointed out that MLAs are running ‘offices of profit’ in BJP ruled states like Rajasthan, Gujarat, Punjab, Haryana etc and in Congress-ruled Karnataka. “They are provided with all facilities like salary, vehicles, Bungalows. Our MLAs were providing free service for the government. BJP and congress can do but AAP can’t. How can it be justified,” asked Chadha.
“Our MLAs are providing free service as the parliament secretaries. Health secretary travels by his scooter and goes to each government hospital to ensure the availability of doctor and other facilities. Education secretary goes to each school to check whether the teachers are present or not. You can go with cameras and verify it,” said Chadha.
Chadha said that both BJP and Congress should apologise to the people of Delhi as they are exposed interrupting the development of Delhi.