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Delhi CM Kejriwal calls off 9-day sit-in at Lt Governor's office

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal with his wife Sunita Kejriwal and party leaders at the former's residence after calling off the sit-in at the Lieutenant Governor's office, in New Delhi on Tuesday. (PTI Photo)

New Delhi, Jun 19 (PTI): Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday called off his nine-day sit-in at Lt Governor Anil Baijal’s office after bureaucrats in his government started attending meetings with ministers of his Aam Aadmi Party.

Deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia said several meetings attended by IAS officers were held during the day.

Officers of the Indian Administrative Service have been at loggerheads with the AAP government following the alleged assault on Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash in February at Kejriwal’s residence.

“Arvind Kejriwal will come out of the L-G office. It was not a dharna. We were waiting to meet the lieutenant governor,” Sisodia told reporters here.

Delhi Deputy CM and Finance Minister Manish Sisodia with AAP leaders Sanjay Singh and Ashutosh addresses a press conference, in New Delhi on Tuesday. (PTI photo)

Following the alleged assault, the IAS officers had stopped attending meetings with AAP ministers. Last Sunday, representatives of the Delhi IAS officers’ body had told the media that they had been keeping away from meetings with the AAP ministers out of fear, but they had denied they were on strike.

Earlier Tuesday, the Supreme Court had refused an urgent hearing on a plea seeking its direction to declare as “unconstitutional” the sit-in by Kejriwal.

A vacation bench of justices S.A. Nazeer and Indu Malhotra said the plea would be listed for hearing after the summer vacation.

The Delhi High Court had on Monday asked Kejriwal and his colleagues as to who had authorised the protest.

“Who authorised the strike/ dharna? You are sitting inside the LG’s office. If it’s a strike, it has to be outside the office. You cannot hold a strike against someone’s office or residence,” a bench of Justices A.K. Chawla and Navin Chawla had said.

The high court had then scheduled the next hearing of the matter for June 22.

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