AAP Records Cabinet Meeting, Top Officer Demands Footage

An Aam Aadmi Party spokesperson said Tuesday's meeting was recorded to allay the apprehensions of the Chief Secretary

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AAP Records Cabinet Meeting, Top Officer Demands Footage

Officers have accused AAP MLAs of assaulting a senior officer in Arvind Kejriwal's presence

New Delhi:  A closed-door cabinet meeting of the Delhi government on Tuesday was recorded on camera by "Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's media team", a senior government officer said, adding he has written to the chief minister for the footage.

An Aam Aadmi Party spokesperson, however, denied the claim of Principal Secretary of Home, Manoj Parida. It was the "Delhi government" that did the recording, the AAP spokesperson said, adding they have received Mr Parida's letter and would be "happy to hand over the footage".

The officer said the "meeting was not recorded by government officials" and that they were not informed about it before the meeting.

"He (Kejriwal) has his own media team... they must have done it," Mr Parida said.

The Principal Secretary, who described cabinet meetings as a "confidential affair", said that he had also talked to the Chief Secretary and quoted him in the letter asking for the footage.

The officer said he was against recording of cabinet meetings as it would hamper "free expression of ideas".

As per norms, an officer said, it is only the outcome of cabinet meetings that are made public and not the discussions and the entire proceedings.

"He (Kejriwal) should have consulted us for putting up the camera. We would see in future what can be done," the officer said.

The recording of the cabinet meeting comes after Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash alleged that he was beaten up by AAP legislators including MLA Amanatullah Khan in the presence of Mr Kejriwal at the chief minister's home on February 19 night, where he had been called for a meeting.

The AAP spokesperson said Tuesday's meeting was recorded to allay the apprehensions of the Chief Secretary. The Principal Secretary said that just before the cabinet meeting, he had raised the issue of the meeting being recorded with the chief minister, but Mr Kejriwal said it was being done so that "no one complains later".

Mr Parida said the camera was switched on and left inside the room 10 minutes before the meeting started.

"Immediately after the meeting, I wrote a letter to the CM saying that the General Administration Department would like to keep the footage of the recording," Mr Parida said. "But they haven't handed over the footage to us yet."
 

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