New Delhi, July 26: The foundation stone laying ceremony for the proposed new headquarters of Delhi Police was marred by a controversy when Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, the Chief Guest of the event, skipped the function citing inadequacy in the documentation of the project.
“It (the building) still has not been given its environmental and height clearances, among other. Home Ministry officials suggested I should not go there,” he told reporters here minutes after cancelling the visit to the function organised at Jai Singh Marg near Connaught Place.
Immediately after the function, the Delhi Police chief rushed to the North Block where he had to wait for more than 45 minutes before Shinde gave him an audiance. Union Home Secretary Anil Goswami was also present in that meeting.
“The Home Minister had accepted the invitation to lay the foundation stone (for the police HQ). But later, he refused to come.
“So, we have only done ‘bhoomi pujan' and have not laid the foundation stone. Someone in his ministry told the Home Minister that it would not be correct going there,” he said after his meeting with the Home Minister.
The Minister is reported to be upset with Delhi Police chief over mishandling of protests in the wake of the December 16 gangrape incident in the city.
The cold war intensified further when a group of angry protesters vandalised the official residence of the Minister who was away in Russia at that time.
An inquiry was held into this incident after which “displeasure” was recorded in the annual confidential reports of senior police officers.
The ‘bhoomi poojan' was performed by Gajendra Haldea, infrastructure advisor to the Planning Commission for the new Police Headquarters building to be build at a cost of Rs 1095 crore at Jai Singh Road here in the heart of the city.