Sharp differences have cropped up among the top Delhi government bureaucrats over a host of contentious issues concerning the National Capital including the installation of CCTV cameras and the inauguration of a state-of-the-art Signature Bridge. Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash was not in favour of the inauguration of the Signature Bridge last Sunday as the project is yet to be completed while additional chief secretary Manoj Parida was favour of allowing vehicle on the bridge as it will take another four to five months to complete the entire project.
Prakash had opposed the Arvind Kejriwal government move saying that who will be in control of the CCTV data that would be captured.
Sources close to the top bureaucrats said that rifts have been widening between the two top bureaucrats of Delhi government over a host of contentious issues concerning the national capital. “Chief Secretary of Delhi was not in favour of the opening of the Bridge as it was not completed till date. The project needs at least three to fourth months to complete. On the other hand, Parida was in favour of the opening of Signature Bridge for the public to reduce traffic jam on the stretch. This has led to a confrontation between Parida and Prakash,” said a senior official of Delhi government who is close to both Parida and Prakash.
“Once the model code of conduct is imposed, the state government will not be able to inaugurate it,” Parida said. Parida is also holding the charge of the Home Department and General Administration Department (GAD) which is responsible for the installation of CCTV cameras in Delhi.
Besides, the issue of installation of CCTV camera in Delhi was also a reason behind the tussle between two top bureaucrats of Delhi government.
Prakash had opposed the Arvind Kejriwal government move saying that who will be in control of the CCTV data that would be captured. “The main issue of contention in the Delhi CCTV controversy relates to the long hours of footage that these cameras will capture. The networks function under different public and private authorities. These include the Delhi Police, Delhi Metro, municipal corporations and commercial establishments.
“The standard operating procedures (SOPs) that can “control, access and handle” the data are not streamlined. Hence, there are significant concerns raised over intrusion into the privacy of the people,” said officials closed to Prakash. Parida was in favour of allowing installation of CCTV cameras in Delhi despite objections by Chief Secretary as the proposal was related to his department.
Interestingly, due to the ongoing tussle between two top bureaucrats in Delhi government, the ruling AAP leaders are making efforts to divide the bureaucracy further in the National Capital.
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