The Supreme Court on Wednesday rejected to intervene on appeals filed by the Centre and Puducherry Lieutenant Governor (LG) Kiran Bedi that challenged Madras High Court order which had curbed the Lieutenant Governor’s power to interfere in the day-to-day administration of the Union Territory.

A bench headed by Chief justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi disposed of the appeal of the Centre and Bedi and stated that the LG may approach division bench of the High Court against Madra High Court interim order which had barred her authority to act independently of the elected government.

The Madras High Court earlier had ruled that Bedi didn’t have any right to interfere with the powers of Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy and could not seek any government documents from the Puducherry government.

Bedi, in the month of May, had moved the Supreme Court for a status quo order on the administrative functioning in the Union Territory. In a ruling on April 30, the Madras High Court had stated that the LG must follow the advice of Council of Ministers. She has been at loggerheads with the chief minister over the administrative division of work.

The Madras High judgment held that government secretaries of the Puducherry administration were required to report to the Council of Ministers headed by the Chief Minister on all official matters. It had also clarified that Bedi could not interfere in the day-to-day affairs of the Union Territory. Following the judgment, the chief minister has asked for Bedi’s resignation for halting development activities.

In her petition, Bedi claimed that the situation in the state was such that there was administrative chaos with officials unsure who to obey.

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Himakshi Panwar