Apex court's verdict against democracy: Arvind Kejriwal
NEW DELHI: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday said the Supreme Court order on power-sharing in the city goes against democracy and said his government will seek legal remedies. In a blow to the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government, the top court said that it is the centre and not the Delhi government that has the powers to order investigations against corrupt officers in the capital. Following a split verdict, the court left the decision on who controls Delhi officers to a higher bench.
CM Kejriwal called the ruling "injustice to the people of Delhi". Claiming the court order states the elected government has no power to transfer officers, Kejriwal sought to know how the AAP government will work and said the chief minister of Delhi does not have the power to appoint even a peon. "We have been suffering for the last four years. For every work and forgetting each file cleared, if the Delhi chief minister and his ministers have to hold protests and sit on hunger strike at the LG house, how will the government work? What sort of democracy is it?" he asked.
"We have relentlessly fought with the L-G and bureaucrats to ensure that files are cleared. How will Delhi function like this? If we have to sit on a dharna for getting files cleared, then how do we run Delhi?" he said in a press briefing. The AAP party chief also appealed to the people of Delhi to 'give all seven seats to AAP' following which, "We (Delhi govt) will force them (Centre) to grants full statehood to Delhi".
He also appealed to people, not to see this election as one to select a Prime Minister. "Give us all the seven seats in the Lok Sabha election, so that we can have a larger say. The party with 67 seats does not have the power to transfer officers, but the party (BJP) with 3 seats has," CM Kejriwal said on Thursday.
Arvind Kejriwal's government had argued that the elected government should have the power to act against corrupt bureaucrats before the court said the Anti-Corruption Bureau will be under the central government's control. Justices AK Sikri and Ashok Bhushan, who were on the constitution bench, could not decide on who should have powers over officers in Delhi. Justice Sikri believed that the transfer of high-ranking officers of the level of Joint Secretary and above should be decided by the Lieutenant Governor
In July 2018, CM Kejriwal sat on a nine-day-long protest in front of Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal's office to push him into ending an alleged strike by bureaucrats.