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LG To Delhi government : I am still the boss on postings and transfers of officers

LG TO DELHI GOVERNMENT

LG to Delhi government, Indicating that the Centre versus AAP government battle will continue to rage on, CM Arvind Kejriwal said on Friday that lieutenant governor Anil Baijal’s refusal to accept that the elected government had the right to carry out transfers and postings of officers was a conspiracy to paralyse the AAP government. After the meeting with the CM, the first since Kejriwal’s nine-day dharna at L-G’s House, Baijal wrote to Kejriwal, stating he had been advised by the Union home ministry to keep control over ‘services’ because the SC had clarified that the issue shall be taken up by the regular SC bench. “So, the May 21, 2015, MHA notification which shifted services to L-G continues to be valid,” he asserted.

Kejriwal said the AAP government was consulting legal experts on whether it should file a contempt petition against the L-G. Kejriwal had on Thursday told the L-G in a letter that “if the L-G acts on files related to ‘services’, it would amount to contempt of the SC.”

“The SC made it clear that the elected government in Delhi has executive powers over all subjects except land, public order, and police, thus bringing ‘services’ under the purview of AAP government,” Kejriwal said at a press conference after the meeting. He tweeted, “MHA has advised L-G to ignore that part of SC order which restricts L-G’s powers to only three subjects. Very dangerous that Central government is advising L-G not to follow SC’s orders.” Kejriwal has sought an appointment from home minister Rajnath Singh to urge him to follow the SC’s orders. The CM said, during his meeting with Baijal, he had pointed out that although the MHA notification had not been quashed specifically, it becomes “infructuous in the light of such clear orders of the SC which has said that on all subjects the executive powers lie with the council of ministers except for land, public order and police.”

In his letter to the CM, the L-G said: “The CM is aware that the ministry of home affairs had issued the presidential directions on May 21, 2015, that ‘services’ falls outside the purview of Delhi government and thus the elected government will have no executive powers in relation to ‘services’. This notification was upheld by Delhi HC on August 4, 2016.” “Further clarity on ‘services’ will be achieved when the appeals pending before the regular bench are disposed of,” he added.

Kejriwal argued that it would be very difficult to execute projects and schemes without control over officers. “For the first time in the history of the country, the Central government has openly refused to obey the SC order. Such violation of SC order can lead to anarchy,” he said. The CM alleged that the Centre did not want the AAP government to do good work because that would go in AAP’s favour in the elections.

Within hours of the SC judgment, the AAP government had introduced a new system for transfer and postings of and other officers, making CM and ministers the approving authorities.

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