Two days after the Supreme Court upheld the Delhi government's primacy in the city's governance, Lt Governor Anil Baijal on Friday met Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and assured him of continued support—but conveyed that the Services Department still did not come under his government's ambit.
In a statement issued by the Lt Governor's office, Baijal cited a Home Ministry notification of 2015 which, in turn, referred to clauses in the Constitution to keep 'Services' out of the Delhi government's purview.
"... the Ministry of Home Affairs, vide its notification dated May 21, 2015 had issued the Presidential directions under Article 239 and 239 AA of the Constitution that 'Services' falls outside the purview of the Assembly of the NCT of Delhi and consequently the government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi will have no executive powers in relation to ‘Services'.
"The said notification was also upheld by the Delhi High Court vide judgment dated August 4, 2016," read the statement.
After the meeting, Kejriwal said they were discussing their next step with lawyers and cabinet ministers after Lt. Governor Anil Baijal refused to hand over the Services Department to the city state's elected government.
Now, Kejriwal has sought time from Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to urge him to follow the Supreme Court's orders.
"The MHA has advised LG to ignore that part of SC order, which restricts LG's powers to only 3 subjects. Very dangerous that Central government advising LG not to follow SC's orders. Have sought time from Rajnath Singh to urge him to follow SC's orders," he said in a tweet.
In a statement issued by the Lt Governor’s office, Anil Baijal cited a Home Ministry notification of 2015 which, in turn, referred to clauses in the Constitution to keep ‘Services’ out of the Delhi government’s purview.
Services Department handles postings and transfer of IAS and other state officers with the Delhi government.
The LG office communique comes after Thursday's Delhi government order, through which it sought to take back the powers to post and transfer officers away from the LG.
Speaking to the media after his meeting with the LG, Kejriwal said that he told the latter that the Supreme Court's decision should supersede all previous notifications and thus the Home Ministry notification is "automatically quashed".
With IANS inputs