Mamata to Dhankhar: Refrain from surpassing CM
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday wrote to Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar saying he should keep himself within the mandate of the Constitution and expressed anguish over his letter to the states police chief on the law and order situation.
Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday wrote to Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar saying he should keep himself within the mandate of the Constitution and expressed anguish over his letter to the states police chief on the law and order situation.
In a nine-page long letter, Banerjee said that the governor's "aspersions sadly consist of uncorroborated judgements and insinuations" against the police and the state government.
"As per Article 163, you are mandated to act as per the aid and advice of your Chief Minister and her Council of Ministers which is the essence of our democracy. I am thus writing to you to express my deep pain and anguish at the excessive and blatant attempt at (the) usurpation of constitutional mandates and unwarranted excesses on your part," she wrote.
"I was extremely upset, anguished and disillusioned on reading your captioned letter and the note addressed to the Director General of Police which was placed before me, as well as to see your Twitter post regarding the same," she said.
Dhankhar, who has been at loggerheads with the TMC government since he assumed office in July 2019, had written to DGP Virendra earlier this month expressing concern over the law and order situation in the state.
Following the DGP's two-line reply, Dhankhar asked the state police chief to meet him by September 26 for details of the "alarming decline in law and order" and steps required to tone it.
In her letter, Banerjee said the governor is an executive nominee of the president whereas "I am the elected representative of the people of West Bengal".
She referred to B R Ambedkar's elucidation of Article 167 of the Constitution in which he had said that the "Governor is like the 'British Crown' and thus has no right to interfere with the day to day administration of the state government".
She also alluded to Supreme Court judgements of 1973 and 2016 and said the governor is the formal head of the state and cannot have an overriding authority over the people's representatives who constitute the state legislature, or even the executive government functioning under the council of ministers with the chief minister as the head.
Banerjee said the governor's inquiry into the criminal investigations in connection with a particular accused in an incident and seeking reports regarding it from the DGP not only amounts to interference in the day to day administration of the state government, but also gives rise to serious suspicions of interference in and influencing the ongoing probe.
Banerjee said that Dhankhar, himself being a lawyer, "should not have entertained the accused and instead should have suggested that the accused follow the path of law and not seek extra-legal intervention in ongoing investigation of the complaints". (ANI)