Tussle between LG &Assembly Speaker reaches new high
NEW DELHI: Now, the tussle between the Lieutenant -Governor and the Assembly Speaker on Monday reached the state Assembly after Speaker Ram Niwas Goel announced that Lieutenant- Governor Anil Baijal has said that the Speaker cannot accept any question on reserved subjects like land, law and order, and services among others.
"Secretariat has also received copies of letters from some departments such as Services, Vigilance, Land and Building, refusing to attend meetings with ministers concerned," he said. However, Goel stressed that legislation on reserved subjects and seeking replies on matters of public interest are two different issues and hence he ruled that "officers are duty bound to provide replies to all questions which are admitted (by the Assembly)".
The Speaker said that first of all it should be noted that as per Rule 291, the Speaker's decision is final regarding interpretation of the Rules of Procedure. Moreover, Rule 293 clearly states: "No decision of the speaker in respect of allowing or disallowing of any resolution or question or in respect of any other matter, shall be questioned."
The Lieutenant-Governor had sent a letter stating that the Speaker cannot accept any questions on reserved subjects to the law department of Delhi government after taking opinion from the Legal Affairs Department of Central Government.
"Delhi Assembly is not subordinate to any central government babu," Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said in the House as both the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party members said that all questions raised by the Assembly should be answered. AAP legislators also came down heavily on officers for not giving a 'proper reply' to an Assembly question, prompting Speaker to refer the matter to the Question and Reference Committee of the House. Notably, the bureaucrats have drawn flak on several occasions since the start of the Assembly's Budget Session on March 16.
The issue was raised by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) after its MLA Girish Soni complained to the Speaker that officers have not given a proper reply to his question related to the urban development department. "I am forwarding the matter to the Question and Reference Committee," Goel told the House. On March 20, the Speaker had forwarded four matters involving the officers to the Question and Reference committee following the demand of action by the AAP MLAs.
In the recent past, the ruling AAP and the bureaucracy have been at loggerheads over various issues after an alleged assault by some Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) legislators on Delhi Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash at Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's residence.
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