Centre gives clearance to Delhi minister Atishi for UK visit

Centre gives clearance to Delhi minister Atishi for UK visit
By Finance
Jun 09

Centre gives clearance to Delhi minister Atishi for UK visit

The Central Government has given clearance to Delhi Education Minister, Atishi, to travel to the United Kingdom for a study tour. The clearance comes after weeks of uncertainty, during which the Delhi government and opposition parties accused the Centre of blocking Atishi’s visit due to political reasons.

In this article, we will discuss the details of Atishi’s UK visit, the controversy surrounding it, and its implications for Indian politics.

The UK Visit

Atishi’s planned UK visit is part of the Delhi government’s efforts to improve its education system. She was slated to attend a three-week training programme at the University of Oxford’s Department of Education, where she would have learned about best practices in education policy and implementation.

The Delhi government had approved Atishi’s visit on May 31, and had also granted her permission to include a private visit to Cambridge University to meet with academics and researchers. However, her plans hit a roadblock when she did not receive clearance from the Central Government, which is required for all overseas travel by Indian ministers.

The delay in clearance resulted in accusations from the Delhi government that the Centre was blocking Atishi’s visit due to political reasons. Some opposition parties also joined in the criticism, with the Aam Aadmi Party accusing the Centre of trying to stifle dissenting voices.

The Controversy

The Delhi government’s accusations of political interference received a boost when it was revealed that another minister, Manish Sisodia, had also been denied clearance for an official visit to Moscow. Sisodia had planned to attend an education conference in Russia, but his application was rejected by the Ministry of External Affairs without any explanation.

Many saw this as evidence of the Centre’s bias against the Delhi government, which is led by the Aam Aadmi Party. The party has been at loggerheads with the Centre over several issues, including the distribution of powers between the state and central governments.

However, the Centre denied any political motive behind the delay in clearance for Atishi’s visit. It claimed that the delay was due to administrative reasons, such as incomplete paperwork and security clearances.

The Implications

The controversy surrounding Atishi’s UK visit is symptomatic of the larger political divide between the Delhi government and the Centre. The Aam Aadmi Party has accused the Centre of using its powers to undermine the state government, while the Centre has accused the Delhi government of overstepping its jurisdiction.

The delay in clearance for Atishi’s visit has also raised questions about the autonomy of state governments in India. Many have pointed out that the Centre’s insistence on granting permission for all overseas travel by ministers undermines the federal structure of the country.

Moreover, the controversy has highlighted the challenges faced by Indian policymakers in implementing reforms and improving governance. Despite the Delhi government’s well-intentioned efforts to improve education, bureaucratic hurdles and political opposition continue to impede progress.

The Central Government’s decision to grant clearance to Atishi for her UK visit is a welcome development. However, it does little to address the underlying tensions between the Delhi government and the Centre, or the larger issues of state autonomy and governance reform in India.

It is imperative that both the Centre and the state governments work together to find constructive solutions to these challenges. Only then can India truly realize its potential as a vibrant democracy and a global economic power.

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