Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari denied permission to use state govt aircraft to Uttarakhand

Maharashtra governor waited in the VIP plane before the pilot informed him that the permission to fly wasn't cleared yet, following which Koshyari took a commercial flight to Dehradun

Press Trust of India February 11, 2021 16:29:19 IST
Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari denied permission to use state govt aircraft to Uttarakhand

File image of Maharashtra governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari. Twitter @BSKoshyari

Mumbai: Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari was scheduled to travel by a state government plane to Dehradun in Uttarakhand on Thursday, but permission was not granted for the flight, sources said.

"The governor later took a commercial flight to travel to Dehradun," they said.

When asked about it, Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar told reporters in Mumbai that he had no clue and will be able to comment after gathering information. However, the opposition BJP in the state demanded an apology from the Uddhav Thackeray-led government over this.

According to the sources, Koshyari was to leave for Dehradun from Mumbai at 10 am. "The governor has to attend a programme in Mussoorie on Friday. He was scheduled to go to Dehradun first and from there, he was to travel to Mussoorie," the sources said.

"Accordingly, a state government plane was booked earlier. But, the permission did not come till the last moment," a source claimed. "Normally, governors do not wait for the permission to come. He sat in the aircraft. The pilot then said the permission was not given yet," the source said.

The governor's office later booked a seat in a private aircraft and he left for Dehradun at around 12.15 pm, the sources said.

When asked about it, the state deputy chief minister said, "I have no clue about this. I will take details on reaching the Mantralaya (state secretariat) and only then will be able to say anything."

Meanwhile, former Maharashtra minister and senior BJP leader Sudhir Mungantiwar said the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA-comprising the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress) government should apologise for "insulting" the governor.

If the state government has purposely denied permission, it is a "blot" on the state's reputation, he said. "If this embarrassment is not intentional, then the state government should suspend the official who failed to issue the flying permission in time to the governor," he said.

"The government should apologise and avoid further escalation of the issue," Mungantiwar said.

Notably, state Congress chief Nana Patole on Wednesday said the MVA government has decided to move court over the 'delay' by the governor in the appointment of nominated members to the Legislative Council.

The Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress coalition government had recommended 12 names for appointment to the Council under the governor's quota to Koshyari in the first week of November last year.

However, BJP leader and former Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Wednesday said it was the governor's prerogative to approve or reject names recommended by the state government.

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