LS Sec Gen gets extension, draws flak from Sushma

Speaker Meira Kumar gave the extension to 63-year-old Vishwanathan from today and Swaraj shot off a letter to her, saying his behaviour and conduct was "not upto the mark" for the high post.

"The conduct and behaviour of the present Secretary General is not upto the mark for this post," Swaraj said adding there were two more reasons for her objection to the extension given to Vishwanathan.

Vishwanathan does not belong to the Lok Sabha Secretariat service and has worked for two decades in the Union Ministry of Law and Justice since 1988 and was Advisor to the Union Minister for Law and Justice from November 2009 to September 2010. He retired as Law Secretary in October 2009.

"You did not hold a formal meeting with the Leader of the Opposition and the Leader of the House on extending the tenure of the present Secretary General. Holding informal talks on this cannot be an alternative for a formal meeting. It is a must for the three to sit together before the decision," Swaraj said.

Swaraj also feels only an employee of the Parliament Secretariat should be appointed to the post. When asked about Swaraj's letter, the Speaker told reporters that "it is unethical for me to comment on it".

Vishwanathan declined to comment on the contoversy.

The differences between Kumar and Swaraj over Vishwanathan are not new with the latter objecting to his appointment 11 months ago. She has referred to this in her letter.

"You would remember that at the time of his appointment last year, I had said that the Secretary General should be somebody from the Lok Sabha Secretariat only. At that time, you had said that no official from the LS Secretariat is a deserving candidate for the post, so we can appoint the present Secretary General for 11 months and will keep your suggestion in mind the next year," Swaraj said.

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