Few visitors for public hearings, Secretariat deserted

Two day after Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung ordered Delhi’s babus to hold ‘janata durbars’, the Secretariat remained deserted with a very few visitors. Moreover, bureaucrats were not available at their seats at the time of public meetings.

Notice boards of almost all the offices were not updated at all. At the Food and Supply Department, the information board was showing old public meeting hours of 12-1 pm. While at the Excise Department, the information board was showing public meeting hours from 11.30 am to 1.30 pm and in the PWD and Transport Department, the meeting time was mentioned from 3.30-4.30 pm.

On Thursday, the Chief Secretary was not available during the time fixed after Jung’s order for public meetings. And officials at his office were seen asking a couple of complainants to wait till 1:30 pm, when they expected him to come.

The Health Secretary, Environment Secretary, Food Secretary and many other bureaucrats were not available at their cabins at the time announced for public meeting.

Jung had on Tuesday directed all the Principal Secretaries, Secretaries and Head of Departments to be available in their offices for public meetings.

 The bureaucrats were asked to be present from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm every day, except on Wednesday, to meet public and hear their grievances. Jung visited the secretariat on Wednesday and directed the bureaucrats to meet people and carry forward development works.

At the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) office in central Delhi, however, it was a different scene. Many people approached the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) office with their grievances. Asked about the details of public meeting, a senior DJB official, who refused to be identified said, “The media and people were expecting  chaos like the earlier public hearing (referring to the former AAP government’s flop janata durbar). We are dealing with complaints on day to day basis. This is not a new thing for our department.”

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