delhi chief minister arvind kejriwal
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind KejriwalIANS

The Delhi Chief Minister and three members of the cabinet staged a sit-in protest at the Lt. Governor Anil Baijal's office yesterday, refusing to leave the office until their demands were met. The Raj Niwas called it a protest without reason.

The chief minister is accompanied by Cabinet Ministers Satyendar Jain, Gopal Rai and Manish Sisodia.

Kejriwal wanted Baijal to issue a direction to IAS officers to end their "strike" and also sought action against the officers, who have been on strike for four months. Kejriwal is also demanding approval to the proposal for doorstep delivery of ration.

As of now, Kejriwal and the ministers don't have any plans of coming out of Baijal's office and will continue the strike. The four were constantly updating details through tweets. They spent the Monday night on the sofas in Baijal's waiting room.

A number of party leaders were squatting on the road outside the Lt Governor's office to show their support to Kejriwal. Security outside Raj Niwas has been beefed up since Monday evening.

Kejriwal had sought a meeting with the LG. Accompanied by Cabinet Ministers SatyendarJain, Gopal Rai, and Manish Sisodia, the Delhi chief minister arrived at Raj Niwas on Monday evening at 5:30 pm.

The intention of the meeting was to demand action on their three concerns, including a direction to IAS officers to end their "strike" and to take action against officers who have struck work for "four months".

Anil Baijal
Lieutenant Governor Anil BaijalTwitter

Calling it an "unprecedented move", the LG's office said that Kejriwal, along with deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia along with two other ministers, "remained defiant and continued to pressurise that the officers must be immediately summoned to Raj Niwas and the so-called 'agitation' of officers be called off, and sought that immediate approval to proposal for doorstep delivery of rations be given [sic]"

The LG said he had already spoken to officers in this regard and the "insistence to summon them is not desirable".

"Since the Chief Minister and Ministers refused to listen to this suggestion and as the LG had pre-scheduled appointments at his residence, he had no option but to leave the office," a statement from the Raj Niwas said, terming the protest as a "dharna without reason".

According to the statement released by Raj Niwas:

In the meeting, the LG was threatened by Kejriwal, who demanded that the officers should be immediately summoned at Raj Niwas and directions should be given to end the so-called 'strike'.

In response, it was reiterated by the LG that there is no strike by the employees of GNCTD (Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi)

The LG also advised Kejriwal to build the confidence of the employees at all levels and to work out ways of addressing their genuine concerns, according to the statement.

On the issue of the file on doorstep delivery of rations, the LG informed Kejriwal that it was lying with the Minister for Civil Supplies for nearly three months.

[With inputs from IANS]