New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: President Ram Nath Kovind on Tuesday removed Kiran Bedi as the Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry, said the Rashtrapati Bhavan in a statement, adding that Dr Tamilisai Soundararajan, Governor of Telangana, will take the additional charge of the union territory (UT).

"The President has directed that Dr. Kiran Bedi shall cease to hold the office of the Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry and has appointed Dr. Tamilisai Soundararajan, Governor of Telangana, to discharge the functions of the Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry, in addition to her own duties, with effect from the date she assumes charge of her office, until regular arrangements for the office of Lieutenant-Governor of Puducherry are made," Ajay Kumar Singh, press secretary to the President, said in a statement.

Bedi's removal comes hours after a political crisis erupted in the union territory after Congress MLA A John Kumar resigned from his post, reducing the ruling party into a minority. Kumar, who was considered a close confidant of Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy, cited "dissatisfaction with the Congress government" while resigning from his position.  

Following Kumar's resignation, Puducherry Social Welfare Minister Kandasamy blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bedi for "harassing" the Congress government in the union territory and trying to "dissolve the regime". "We are working to dissolve the cabinet headed by CM Narayanasamy and win the assembly elections again," he said, as reported by news agency ANI.   

Before Kumar, three Congress MLAs -- A Namassivayam, E Theeppainjan and Malladi Krishna Rao -- had resigned from their position while another lawmaker -- N Dhanavelou -- was disqualified for alleged anti-party activities in July last year.

Here it is noteworthy to mention that Namassivayam and Theeppainjan had joined that Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) last month. Quoting sources, news agency PTI has reported that Kumar can also join the saffron party ahead of the assembly polls in the UT that are slated to be held in April and May this year.

Notably, BJP chief JP Nadda had slammed the Congress last month for alleged rampant corruption and vowed to capture power in the UT by winning 23 plus seats out of the 30. The Congress under the leadership of Narayanasamy had won 15 assembly seats in the 2016 polls.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma