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Sisodia asks Jung to axe probe panel

Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia on Monday again appealed that Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung should immediately dissolve the three-member committee set up by him and return the files impounded by the Lieutenant Governor’s office to the concerned departments. Failure to do so would “cause unlawful obstruction in discharge of the Constitutional obligations of the Delhi government,” he added. 

Sisodia in a letter to the LG said that the Delhi Cabinet in its meeting on October 14, 2016, chaired by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, noted that there is no provision in the Constitution, or in any statute or rule, whatsoever, which empowers setting up of an external committee to enquire into the ongoing projects of public welfare,question officers and ‘threaten’ to recommend criminal and administrative action against them. 

The Deputy CM urged the LG to “observe and respect the division of powers”. 

As per the rules, a minister is not required to refer any matter to the Lieutenant Governor except in certain cases which are categorically specified. 

“The Council recognizes LG’s prerogative to call the minister for discussion with an endeavour to resolve any difference of opinion with any minister in respect of a decision taken by him under Rule 49 of the Transaction of Business Rules.” 

“It also recognises that in case LG wishes to refer any matter for consideration of the Council, such recourse is available under Rule 49 of TBR and Section 45 of GNCTD Act, 1991. 

The Council has dutifully followed the administrative practices and constitutional conventions well established for the past 25 years,” Sisodia added. 

The Deputy CM pointed out the dangerous precedent being set by the office of LG by unsettling the decisions taken by the government long after they had been implemented. 

The recourse to such enquiry committee is also in opposition to extant rules and constitutional conventions, he said. 

He also reiterated that the Delhi government should be allowed to function pursuant to public mandate and in consonance with the Constitution and any attempt towards miscarriage of governance should be warded off by all concerned, including the LG.  

It may be recalled that the Delhi government has been continuously making attempts to resolve the issues. 

The Delhi government had earlier written to the Shunglu Committee, post the Cabinet resolution, written to the LG and now again to the LG.
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