Road blockade despite Bazeley's refusal of MeSEB assignment
Shillong, Apr 24 (UNI) The Khasi Students Union (KSU) refused to climb down from its proposed road blockade tonight, even after former chief secretary P J Bazeley declined to take charge as the chairman of the Meghalaya State Electricity Board (MeSEB).
''Though Mr Bazeley has refused to accept the post, we will continue the road blockade tonight as scheduled. The blockade will be called off if the meeting of the ruling Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) tonight offers any acceptable solution,'' KSU chairman Samuel Jyrwa told UNI here today.
The MDA would meet here tonight to discuss various issues including of Mr Bazeley.
''However, the blockade will not be that intense tonight,'' said Mr Jyrwa.
Even though the latest developments indicated a solution to the crisis, further trouble was brewing with several organisations from the Jaintia Hills region demanding Mr Bazeley's appointment.
The Jaintia Students Union (JSU) and the Jaintia Youth Federation (JYF) yesterday gave a seven-day ultimatum to the state government for appointing the former bureaucrat as the MeSEB chairman.
In a letter sent to the principal secretary of the Power department earlier, Mr Bazeley turned down the new post expressing his 'deep gratitude' for the 'immense faith reposed' in him.
''I had a few post-retirement responsibilities lined up and would be getting engaged in such personal and organisational pursuits soon. As such, while I will be at Shillong for about half the time each month, it will not be possible for me to give my full time to MeSEB or any particular assignment,'' said Mr Bazeley in his letter, released to media last night by Principal Secretary B K Dev Varma.
''I take the present state government's offer as an indication that my endeavours while in service were to the satisfaction of all concerned. This in itself, leaves me immensely satisfied,'' he said.
The KSU had already observed a three-day office picketing from April 18 to April 20 to protest the government's move, paralysing the normal functioning of the government offices and financial institutions in the state capital.
KSU had accused the government of 'favouritism' in appointing a retired government official.
While the BJP and the NCP had opposed the appointment, several MLAs of the ruling alliance were also reportedly against the cabinet move.
Congress MLA and former Home Minister R G Lyngdoh had earlier come up openly criticising the government on the issue.
UNI SG-PRS JYN/SRS VC1747