Bengaluru: Karnataka Chief Secretary Arvind Jadhav has landed in an embarrassing spot by running up the stairs and bolting himself in a room to shun the media at the state secretariat to avoid queries about his absence from a parliamentary committee meeting.
A video footage of Jadhav running up up the flight of stairs from the ground floor of the Vidhana Soudha to the second floor and later bolting himself in a room was aired by Kannada TV channels and went viral.
The scene came when the media accomapnied the Chief Secretary and sought to question his absence, after which Jadhav rushed on the stairs, ran into a room and bolted it from inside.
The parliamentary committee meeting scheduled at the Vidhana Soudha was attended by Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha Thambi Durai and its members, including Congress leader Mallikarjuna Kharge.
In what was being considered a breach of protocol, Jadhav was “too late” for the meeting of the Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS), which lasted briefly.
The Chief Secretary’s act left the MPs red faced, with some Congress MPs taking up the issue with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.
Jadhav, who was reportedly at the High Court in connection with a case, attempted to pacify the MPs and apologised to them later, according to some committee members.
Official sources said Siddaramaiah has already sought an explanation from Jadhav about his absence.
Asked about Jadhav’s absence, Siddaramaiah said in Mysuru that he was not aware why he did so and he would question the Chief Secretary about it.
Jadhav, a 1978-batch IAS officer was on December 31 appointed as Chief Secretary and is due to attain superannuation on June 5.
BJP member on the committee P C Mohan said Jadhav did not also attend the lunch hosted in honour of the parliamentary panel members.
Commenting on Jadhav’s act, former Chief Minister and Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Jagadish Shettar said “he is a good officer. I have respect for him but I’m unable to understand why he created such a situation for himself.”
“One has to face the situation. He should have answered the question. If at all he did not have an answer, he should have told the same, but I don’t know why he tried to avoid in the way he did.
Shettar said when the parliamentary committee headed by the Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha has come, due procedures should have been followed.
Jadhav did not react to the media on the incident.