On Saturday, an advertisement for recruitment of civil defence volunteers by the Delhi government stoked a controversy after it referred the people of Sikkim as "subject" along with those from Bhutan and Nepal.
Soon after the advertisement stoked controversy, Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal suspended a senior official responsible for the "error" in the advertisement. "A senior officer of Directorate of Civil Defence (HQ) has been suspended with immediate effect for publishing an advertisement which disrespects the territorial integrity of India by making incorrect reference to Sikkim on the same lines as some neighbouring countries," he tweeted.
Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal further said that zero tolerance for such gross misconduct. "Direction has also been given immediately to withdraw the offensive advertisement," he added.
Meanwhile, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal also condemned the act and said: "Sikkim is an integral part of India. Such errors also cannot be tolerated. The advertisement has been withdrawn and action taken against the officer concerned."
In an advertisement in a recent newspaper for the recruitment of volunteers for the Civil Defense Corps, Sikkim had been clubbed with neighbouring countries such as Nepal and Bhutan. The advertisement for recruitment of civil defence volunteers published in newspapers on Saturday mentioned under eligibility criteria "Citizen of India or a subject of Sikkim or of Bhutan or of Nepal and a resident of Delhi".
After Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal announced suspension of an employee responsible for showing Sikkim as an 'independent nation,' but the map row escalated: the Sikkim government has now written to the Delhi Chief Secretary objecting to the state being referred to as an independent country in one of the Delhi government advertisements, calling it "hurtful".