New Delhi: Relations between former Delhi Vice Governor Najeeb Jung and Prime Minister Arvind Kejriwal are recalled for the bitter struggle for power that sparked one of the most controversial epochs in Indian history of federalism.
But three years after Jung left his post, he seems to have left all hostility behind. During a conversation with News18, the former IAS officer praised the work of the AAP government led by Kejriwal and said performance has improved significantly in the past year.
"I think Arvind has his heart in the right place as Prime Minister," said Jung, who suddenly stepped down as L-G in December 2016 after a long feud with the CM, a few weeks before Delhi goes to the poll.
The two have a good personal relationship now, he said, and any sharpness between them is a myth.
He said that although there used to be differences between him and Kejriwal, these were related to the interpretation of the constitution. “We saw things differently. I respect him for it because politicians often see things differently than I do, ”he said.
Jung described the growth he had experienced in Kejriwal and said he had become a "much, much better" administrator in recent years when he spoke about the importance of taking government officials with a government. "He learned in six years, I think," he added.
However, the 69-year-old believes that CM Delhi would have been far more successful if it had had the officials with it from the start.
“His initial enthusiasm for getting 67 seats at such a young age made him choose a path of aggression. I don't think that was necessary, ”he told News18.
"But other than that … his performance was very good. I have tremendous respect for Manish Sisodia and the way he behaved … worked in education. I also respect Arvind for his work in the health sector, ”added Jung.
As LG in Delhi, Jung had led to conflicts with the Kejriwal on several issues. The most controversial were the government's anti-corruption bureau in Delhi, the appointment of bureaucrats and the transfer of officials, which forced the two parties to turn to the courts frequently – a dispute that affected governance in the capital ,
When he thought about it, the seasoned bureaucrat, who also served as vice chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia, said the AAP government would have done better if it had had a willing bureaucracy.
"It was an obstacle for him (Kejriwal) just because his relationships with officials were never the best. He wanted to work quickly: systems should work quickly, but systems have their own momentum. You can't shorten procedures, "he said, adding," We can develop systems to speed them up, but at that time the officials were not willing to do what Arvind wanted. This adversely affected his own administration. "
(The full interview will be published on Wednesday.)
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