Panel framing SOP for CCTV camera project gets extension till June-end
Panel framing SOP for CCTV camera project gets extension till June-end

New Delhi  (PTI):  The Lieutenant Governor-appointed committee entrusted with the framing of standing operating procedure (SOP) for the installation of CCTV cameras in Delhi has been given an extension till the end of this month to submit its report, sources said.

Lt Governor Anil Baijal had earlier asked the six-member committee, headed by Delhi's principal home secretary Manoj Parida, to submit its report on June 8. Last month, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, his cabinet colleagues and AAP MLAs staged a dharna near Baijal's office, demanding dissolution of the committee which the chief minister described as "very dangerous". 

Kejriwal had alleged that BJP did not want the AAP government's ambitious CCTV camera project to be executed which was why it was being stalled "through the lieutenant governor". One of the sources said the committee had sought time from the L-G to submit its report as representatives of various organisations, including resident welfare associations, demanded their views to be included in framing SOP for the CCTV camera project. 

"In view of the committee's request, the L-G has asked it to submit its report by the end of this month," the source said. The panel is likely to regulate the installation of CCTV cameras in both private and government buildings in the national capital. 

According to the order setting terms and reference of the committee, the use of surveillance camera system should not be permitted to become a "tool to violate" privacy of individuals which is considered to be a fundamental right. 

On May 14, Kejriwal, his cabinet ministers and MLAs marched to the L-G's office to press Baijal "not to stall" the CCTV camera project under "pressure from the BJP". 

During the two-kilometre march, Kejriwal, ministers and MLAs had raised slogans against the L-G and the BJP. Later, they sat on a dharna near Baijal's office after the L-G, according to Kejriwal, had allegedly refused to meet Cabinet ministers with AAP MLAs. 

Baijal had termed Arvind Kejriwal's dharna a "protest without basis" and alleged that the chief minister was "more comfortable" with making baseless allegations against him. 

He said that the protest was based on "unwarranted apprehensions" about the stalling of the CCTV project. During the 2015 assembly election, the Aam Aadmi Party had promised to install CCTV cameras across the city.