New Delhi, Nov 17: President Pratibha Patil has “advised” Delhi Government to exercise caution in making announcements while responding to a Lokayukta order against Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit for “misrepresenting” facts about construction of low-cost flats ahead of the 2008 assembly polls.
The response by the President follows Lokayukta Justice Manmohan Sarin's recommendation to her that Dikshit should be cautioned for misrepresenting facts by announcing that 60,000 low-cost flats were ready for handing over knowing well that the same were not ready.
“The President observed that the Urban development department should be advised to be careful in such matters,” government sources told PTI.
The Urban Development department is the nodal agency for distribution of low cost flats to the poor.
In an order in July, Justice Sarin had held that Dikshit “misrepresented” to the public about construction of low cost houses to “obtain gain or favour to herself or her political party” and had recommended to the President to censure her.
Deprecating the conduct of Dikshit, the Lokayukta, in his order, said people should “stand up against unethical practices” and build up a strong public opinion to ensure that public functionaries adhere to “high standards of integrity and conduct”.
Sarin's order had come following investigation into the complaint filed by advocate Sunita Bhardwaj, a BJP worker.
The Home Ministry, in its opinion, is understood to have conveyed to the President that Dikshit did not have any “malafide intention” in the announcement.
Dikshit's “misrepresentation” of facts was contained in a message of her in a booklet which was part registration form for allotment of flats to the urban poor and slum dwellers.