‘BJP Like a Kid Who Runs Away After Losing’: Kejriwal on New Bill

The Centre’s new bill If passed, would force the Delhi government to pass all executive decisions through the L-G. 

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Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal (right) and Prime Minister Modi

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday, 17 March, appealed to the Centre to take back the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Bill, 2021, asking the Modi government to “not cheat people with this legislation”.

Kejriwal addressed a crowd at a protest organised by Aam Aadmi Party at Jantar Mantar in the capital on Wednesday, alleging that the BJP is scared of “AAP’s reach in other states”, noted PTI.

The protest was attended by Delhi ministers, AAP MLAs, and councillors who believed that the new bill undermined their powers as ruling party.

"That is why they are trying to stop our development work in Delhi," Kejriwal said, according to the report.

Kejriwal and his party have been at loggerheads with BJP over this new bill, claiming that it was an “unconstitutional and undemocratic” move and an attempt to limit the Delhi government’s power.

ANI quoted Kejriwal calling BJP a “small kid” during the Wednesday protest, saying:

“BJP wants to rule Delhi mischievously, just like a small kid who runs away with both bat and ball after losing a match. When they lose in polls, they buy ruling party MLAs and dismantle government. They tried the same with Delhi MLAs but failed.”
Arvind Kejriwal

“The Centre has brought in a law that says 'Delhi government means Lieutenant Governor'. If this happens, where will the CM go? Do elections, votes, and our 62/70 seats not mean anything? It's a fraud with the people,” alleged Kejriwal, as quoted by ANI.

Kejriwal alleged that the Centre doesn’t believe in the Supreme Court or the Constitution since the SC’s 2018 order asked for files to remain with an elected government in Delhi, and yet the new law asks for files to be sent to the L-G, added the report.

In July 2018, a five-judge bench of the Supreme Court, led by the then Chief Justice of India, Dipak Misra, said that the Lieutenant Governor’s approval wasn’t required for each and every decision of the government.

What Is the Bill?

GOVERNMENT MEANS L-G: The first amendment is in Section 21 of the 1991 Act, which says that the word "government" in any law passed by the Legislative Assembly would mean the “Lieutenant Governor".

PRESIDENT’S ASSENT: Under Section 24, this amendment proposes that the Lieutenant Governor shall not provide his assent or refer to the President a bill that is passed by the Legislative Assembly on a matter that is outside its purview.

RULES OF PROCEDURE: Under Section 33, the amendment seeks to add that rules made by the Legislative Assembly for regulating its own procedure and conduct of business shall have to be in sync with those in the “House of the People” or the Lok Sabha.

The amendment also proposes that the opinion of the Lieutenant Governor has to be taken before the implementation of any executive decision taken by the Council of Ministers.

Moreover, the amendment says that the Legislative Assembly shall not make any rule to allow itself or its committees to “consider the matters of day-to-day administration of the Capital or conduct inquiries in relation to the administrative decisions”.

(With inputs from ANI and PTI)

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