Chief Minister V. Narayanasamy on Monday reiterated his charge against the Centre of trying to make Puducherry a Union Territory without a Legislative Assembly.
“Step by step, the powers of the elected government are being taken away. The Lt. Governor deliberately delays and forwards files to the Centre. It gives an impression that the Centre is trying to make Puducherry, a Union Territory without a legislature, like Ladakh or merge the territory with Tamil Nadu. Otherwise, why should an elected government be denied the right to open a renovated building,” the Chief Minister said at a press conference to announce the tour of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi to Puducherry on February 17.
“The government had every right to decide on the date of inaugural of Mairie Building. But the Lt. Governor ordered postponement of the inaugural citing the list of invitees for the event did not contain the name of Central government representatives,” he said. The renovation of the building was taken up with funds sanctioned by the World Bank, he added.
“An elected government has every right to conduct the inauguration of a building renovated using funds from the World Bank,” he said.
Despite the efforts of the Centre and the Lt. Governor, the government was able to fulfil many of its promises and provide relief to the people during the pandemic time, he said.
The Chief Minister said that Congress leader Rahul Gandhi would make a tour of Puducherry on Wednesday. He would interact with the students of Bharathidasan Government College for Women, fishermen, party workers and address a public meeting at the Anglo French Textiles.
AICC secretary in-charge for the Union Territory Sanjay Dutt said Mr. Gandhi’s visit to Puducherry should be considered as Congress leader’s commitment to protect the interests of the Tamil speaking people. “Mr. Gandhi has emphatically stated from New Delhi that he will not allow the BJP to disrespect the Tamil people. His visit re-emphasises this commitment,” he added.
Minister for Revenue M.O.H.F Shahjahan, Member of Parliament (Lok Sabha) V. Vaithilingam and PCC chief A. V. Subramanian were present.