Blow to Kejriwal, HC stands by Centre over Delhi fight

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New Delhi: In a major setback to the AAP government headed by CM Kejriwal, the High Court said the Lieutenant Governor is the constitutional authority in Delhi. Both the Centre and the Delhi government have approached the court following power tussle over the appointment of bureaucrats as Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Lt Governor Najeeb Jung were locked in a bitter fight on the issue.

The high court said that Lt Governor will deliberate on proposal given by the Delhi government The court has declined the request of petitioner to change the Constitutional primacy of the Lt Governor. Meanwhile, a notice has been given to the Centre on Delhi government’s plea.

The court also wants to know whether in past Union Territories were allowed to post or move bureaucrats and sought data in this regard. The order effectively means that any transfer or appointment done the Kejriwal government will remain null and void till it is approved by the Lt Governor.

The Delhi High Court has taken up the AAP government’s appeal challenging the Home Ministry’s notification. The AAP government argued that the Home Ministry’s notification has been given under no legal authority. The AAP government referred to sections in the Constitution to say that the Lt Governor must act on the aid and advice of the Chief Minister and his Cabinet.

The AAP government also convened a two-day special Assembly session on May 26 to pass a resolution against the notification issued by Home Ministry, which called the Lt Governor’s powers absolute and gave him supremacy over the elected government in the national capital.

The face-off between the Delhi government and Lt Governor Najeeb Jung intensified over the appointment of Shakuntala Gamlin as acting Chief Secretary.

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