No new powers for Delhi Govt: Arun Jaitley on Supreme Court verdict

NEW DELHI: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday trained a gun at the Aam Aadmi Party's celebrations of the Top Court judgment on control of the Delhi government are misplaced. He posted his interpretation of Wednesday's ruling in which he argued why the AAP will still not be able to legally control the postings of IAS officers or set up probs.

Jaitley's Facebook blog seems to have come in reply to the triumphant tone that the AAP had taken on Wednesday, along with its declaration that it now has the right to employ or transfer officers as it pleases.

In his post, Jaitley pressed three key points of his interpretation of the Supreme Court ruling as citing Delhi is a Union Territory; the Centre will have one and only authority over police, public order and land, and the Delhi government does not have the power over the appointments and transfers of officers.

"Delhi is not a State and, therefore, there could be no assumption that powers which belong to State Governments also belongs to the elected Government of the Union Territory. It has been specifically held by the Supreme Court that it is crystal clear that by no stretch of imagination, NCT of Delhi can be accorded the status of a State under the present constitutional scheme," Arun Jaitley's post read.

He noted that the Supreme Court was resounding in saying that the "power in relation to police, public order and land shall vest exclusively in the Central Government."

"… if Delhi has no police powers, it cannot set up investigative agency to investigate crimes as had been done in the past," Jaitley noted in his post.

"… the Supreme Court has held categorically that Delhi cannot compare itself at par with other States and, therefore, any presumption that the administration of the UT cadre of services has been decided in favour of the Delhi Government would be wholly erroneous," Jaitley's post further read.

"Since several versions of this judgement have appeared in the public space, I hope those who want to contribute to the public debate would read the judgement before commenting on it," Jaitley asserted to concluded his post.

 

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