Jammu DDC members boycott meet over protocol, name it ‘murder of democracy’

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Newly elected members of the District Development Council (DDC) in Jammu have locked horns with the district administration over a protocol concern.

Trouble erupted on Tuesday when the DDC members, together with chairperson Bharat Bushan and vice-chairperson Suraj Singh, boycotted a gathering convened to vet proposals for the development of roads below the Prime Minister Gram Sadak Yojna-III in Jammu district, complaining that it was a “violation of protocol and an insult to newly created democratic institution” because the letter despatched to them calling the assembly was written by an officer within the Deputy Commissioner’s workplace. They mentioned the assembly ought to have been convened by the DDC chairperson and never an officer from the administration.

In the 14-member DDC, the BJP has 11 members, adopted by two independents and one from National Conference.

DDC chairperson and senior BJP chief Bharat Bushan has written a letter to Lt Governor Manoj Sinha, the Department of Personnel & Training and UT Chief Secretary B V R Subrahmanyam, describing the incident as “murder of democracy”.

Independent member Taranjit Singh justified the boycott, saying the administration should perceive that DDC members weren’t rubber stamp who will vet no matter it needs. The administration ought to flow into the agenda of a gathering nicely in advance and the elected members have to be given due respect, he added.

Chairperson Bushan mentioned he obtained a name from Chief Planning Officer within the Deputy Commissioner’s workplace, asking whether or not he was attending the assembly being held to debate proposals relating to development of the roads. “When I expressed ignorance about the meeting, he told me that a section officer had called me some days ago, but I could not be contacted as I was preoccupied in a meeting,’’ Bushan said. “I told him that being DDC chairperson it was I who should call the meeting and not the Deputy Commissioner.”

Sources mentioned Deputy Commissioner Sushma Chauhan additionally known as Bushan to say that the letter was written following instructions from the Commissioner Secretary, Rural Development Department, to organise conferences of DDCs to debate proposals for varied roads below PMGSY-III.

It was by no means the intention of the administration to harm the feelings of the elected DDC members, together with chairperson, Chauhan mentioned. They letter inviting them to take part within the assembly was written because the DDCs had been but to have a full-fledged construction and the Commissioner-Secretary wished to contain the newly elected members within the decision-making course of, she added.

Incidentally, the newly elected DDC members, together with the chairperson and vice-chairperson, had been administered oath of workplace by Deputy Commissioner Chauhan on December 28 and February 13.

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