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Armed With SC Order, Kejriwal Tells Officers to Fall in Line and Fast-track AAP’s Pet Projects

The Delhi CM also trained guns on the Narendra Modi government and alleged that precious three years would have been saved if the Centre had not withdrawn the powers of the elected government through “illegal orders”.

News18.com

Updated:July 4, 2018, 11:56 PM IST
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Armed With SC Order, Kejriwal Tells Officers to Fall in Line and Fast-track AAP’s Pet Projects
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal being welcomed by government and staff at Delhi Secretariat on Wednesday, July 04, 2018. (Twitter: @arvindkejriwal)
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New Delhi: Buoyed by the Supreme Court verdict, the Aam Aadmi Party government in Delhi wasted no time in asserting its authority by assuming charge of transfers and postings and telling officers to fall in line with the top court’s order by speeding up work on its policies, including doorstep delivery of ration.

In tweets in the afternoon, CM Arvind Kejriwal trained guns on the Narendra Modi government and alleged that precious three years would have been saved if the Centre had not withdrawn the powers of the elected government through “illegal orders”.

“People of Delhi are grateful to judiciary. Today’s order reinforces people’s faith in judiciary (sic),” he wrote after the apex court handed him a major victory in the power tussle against the Centre.

The CM called a Cabinet meeting in which he directed officers to function according to the order of SC. “Also directed to expedite proposals of doorstep delivery of rations and CCTV now," he tweeted.

Installation of CCTV cameras and doorstep delivery were the two contentious issues that had caused a bitter standoff between the AAP government and the L-G in Delhi last month, leading to a dharna in the Raj Niwas that lasted eight days. Kejriwal had repeatedly accused L-G Anil Baijal of hobbling his government on the directions of the Centre.

An official said that around a dozen proposals such as doorstep delivery of ration, CCTV cameras, regularisation of contractual employees and appointment of teachers will be expedited after the apex court's order.

In a landmark order, the Supreme Court on Wednesday clipped the powers of the L-G, saying he has no "independent decision making power" and has to act on the aid and advice of the elected government.

The judgment by a five-judge constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, laid down broad parameters for the governance of the national capital, which has witnessed a bitter power tussle between the Centre and Delhi government since the Aam Aadmi Party government came to power in 2014.

In the afternoon, Delhi’s deputy CM, Manish Sisodia, told the press that a new system for transfer and postings of bureaucrats has also been introduced with Arvind Kejriwal as the approving authority.
So far, the Lieutenant Governor has been the approving authority for transfers and postings of the IAS and DANICS (Delhi, Anadaman and Nicobar Islands Civil Services) officers.

Sisodia emphasised that the SC ruling makes it clear that Delhi Assembly and Cabinet has powers over all subjects, except the three exempted: land, law and order, police.

“The Modi government had introduced 2 points: that services was not with the state government and that LG will become the decision making authority,” Sisodia said, listing the challenges faced by the Delhi administration.

However, senior bureaucrats working with the Delhi government claimed that 'services matter' still lies with the office of Lt Governor because Delhi is a union territory, and services matter does not fall under the concurrent and state lists.

A top officer, requesting anonymity, said the Appropriate Regular Bench of the Supreme Court will take a final decision on the service matters and other issues.
Another officer claimed that the apex court has not set aside the May, 2015 notification of the Ministry of Home Affairs, according to which services matter lies with the L-G.

But Sisodia said the central government and lieutenant governor had "misinterpreted" rules by adding services matter in "reserved subjects" and they should "apologise" for this. Sisodia said the Delhi government doesn't need to get its decision approved by the L-G.
| Edited by: Aakarshuk Sarna
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