‘Don’t reverse decisions that are in public interest’
Launching a scathing attack on Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday said all the decisions taken by the Delhi government in the last one and a half years were being rendered “null and void”, leading to complete chaos.
“This will have serious ramifications for the city and it will send Delhi back by almost two years. But unfortunately, that is exactly what is happening in Delhi. If a few decisions related to public welfare were taken without informing him (LG), they should not be reversed. We have made many flyovers, now will they be demolished? We constructed 8,000 classrooms. Will they have to be demolished as well? Governance is a very serious business hence we must not let the people suffer any more,” said Kejriwal while addressing a press conference on Saturday.
He said that before the August 4 High Court order, the government took various decisions “legitimately” believing that LG’s consent was not needed on some issues. The Delhi High Court, in its order, had held that the LG had primacy over the Delhi administration.
“However, LG believed that his consent was needed. Our intention was not wrong while taking those decisions. The court case was going on and now there’s the interpretation that his approval is needed. In future, decisions will be taken as per orders of the High Court, and whatever order is given by the Supreme Court. But I request the Central government not to victimise the people of Delhi. The court’s order should have prospective effect instead of retrospective effect,” Kejriwal said.
A day after the LG declared Mehboob Alam’s appointment as Delhi Waqf Board CEO illegal and dissolved the religious body on Friday, Kejriwal slammed the decision. Jung has also asked the Delhi government to withdraw last year’s notification increasing circle rates of agricultural land in Delhi. Kejriwal said if there is corruption involved in all those decisions, then the Lt Governor can get them investigated, but they should not be made null and void just because his consent was not taken.
“The move came because its chairman Amanatullah Khan was targeting “big vested interests” responsible for corruption in the religious endowments body. “Everyone knows that Waqf Board had become a centre of corruption. But, after taking over as chairman of the board, Amanatullah Khan increased its income from Rs 26 lakh to Rs 1 crore by taking several measures,” said the
He added that under Amanatullah’s stewardship the Waqf Board had turned a new page. “As many as 1,200 widows were given pension, 100 children were given scholarships. Construction of five schools had started. But on Friday, Waqf Board office was sealed, and we don’t know why it was done. We came to know from the Divisional Commissioner that there were no such orders to seal the office,” Kejriwal added.
On Friday, Jung said that Alam’s appointment as CEO of Waqf Board was “illegal and void ab initio” in the absence of necessary approval from the competent authority. He dissolved the board, the term of which was to expire in December 2016.
Besides, the Delhi Chief Minister added that the government had checked malpractices at ration shops by computerisation, introducing biometric system and linking Aadhaar card of those availing the facility. He announced raising remuneration of guest teachers between Rs 32,000 and 34,000 from the existing Rs 17,000-20,000. He also said 1,000 mohalla clinics would come up across the city very soon.