Services row: Centre's ordinance 'unconstitutional', attempt to snatch power from Delhi govt, says AAP

Addressing a press conference, Delhi minister Atishi said the Centre deliberately chose to bring the ordinance at a time when the Supreme Court has closed for summer vacation

May 20, 2023 11:10 am | Updated 11:10 am IST - NEW DELHI

Delhi Ministers Gopal Rai, Atishi Marlena, Kailash Gahlot, Imran Hussain and Saurabh Bhardwaj wait outside the residence of Lt. Governor V.K. Saxena to request him to follow the Supreme Court’s verdict on matters pertaining to services, in New Delhi on May 19, 2023.

Delhi Ministers Gopal Rai, Atishi Marlena, Kailash Gahlot, Imran Hussain and Saurabh Bhardwaj wait outside the residence of Lt. Governor V.K. Saxena to request him to follow the Supreme Court’s verdict on matters pertaining to services, in New Delhi on May 19, 2023. | Photo Credit: PTI

The AAP on May 20 said the Centre's ordinance on the transfer of bureaucrats in Delhi is "unconstitutional" and a move to snatch the power given to the Delhi government by the Supreme Court in services matters.

Addressing a press conference, Delhi minister Atishi said the Centre deliberately chose to bring the ordinance at a time when the Supreme Court has closed for summer vacation.

The Centre promulgated an ordinance on Friday to create a National Capital Civil Service Authority for transfer of and disciplinary proceedings against Group-A officers from the DANICS cadre.

This came a week after the Supreme Court handed over the control of services, excluding those related to police, public order and land, in Delhi to the elected government.

Atishi said the Centre's ordinance shows that "Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scared of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal" and the power of honest politics.

"They are scared that if he (Kejriwal) gets power, he will do extraordinary work for Delhi. The ordinance is an attempt to snatch the power given to the AAP dispensation by the apex court on May 11," she said.

Even if Delhi's people voted for Kejriwal, this ordinance says he will not run Delhi, the minister said.

The ordinance is "unconstitutional" and will be struck down by the Supreme Court, she said.

"The Centre deliberately chose to bring this ordinance yesterday night. The Supreme Court has closed for vacation for six weeks and this is a deliberate attempt to hamper work," she charged.

Atishi said the Supreme Court gave the powers to the Delhi government after an eight-year-long battle.

"But the Centre could not tolerate this. The ordinance provides for the creation of a National Capital Civil Service Authority with three members -- CM as its chairman and chief secretary and principal home secretary as its members. But it is to be noted that the chief secretary and the principal home secretary will be appointed by the Centre.

"The authority will take decisions by majority. That means decisions will be taken by the Centre's bureaucrats. If it takes any decision that the Centre doesn't like, then the LG will have the power to reverse the decision," she said.

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