Kiran Bedi was removed from her current post as Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry on Tuesday, a late-evening statement released by Rashtrapati Bhavan confirmed. The statement released by President Ram Nath Kovind's office also said that Dr Tamilisai Soundaranjan, Governor of Telangana, will be given the additional charge as Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry.
Here's the full statement released by the Rashtrapati Bhavan
The President has directed that Dr. Kiran Bedi shall cease to hold the office of the Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry and has appointed Dr. Tamilisai Soundararajan, Governor of Telangana, to discharge the functions of the Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry, in addition to her own duties, with effect from the date she assumes charge of her office, until regular arrangements for the office of Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry are made."
Puducherry govt in crisis
The latest development comes amid an ongoing political crisis within the Puducherry government. Puducherry chief minister Narayanswamy's close aide A. John Kumar who was elected to Puducherry Assembly from Kamaraj Nagar constituency in 2019 bypolls has resigned giving a jolt to the Congress party in the Union Territory.
Other Congress MLAs who quit the party including Malladi Krishna Rao on February 15, former PWD Minister A. Namassivayamy and E. Theeppainjan on January 25. With back-to-back resignations, Congress's numbers plummeted to way below the required halfway mark and headed towards crisis. Congress and DMK had a combined strength of 16 MLAs in the 30-member Puducherry assembly. The resignations have taken the Congress-led government to below 10 and the Opposition now has 14 MLAs.
The crisis befalls ahead of Rahul Gandhi's visit to the UT where he is expected to kickstart the party's campaign for the upcoming election.
(Includes agency inputs)