Wednesday, 29 June, 2022
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The Modi govt hasn’t exactly upheld the spirit of federalism with its action on AAP posts

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In the spirit of federalism, the central government could have asked the Delhi government to seek post-facto approval for the posts that were created.

The general administrative department of the Government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi has cancelled the appointment of nine advisers to various ministers in the Aam Aadmi Party government on the premise that the creation of posts and their appointments to these posts was illegal.

And what was the illegality? That “no prior approval of the central government” was taken before appointing the nine advisers, a mandatory requirement, it seems, under an order issued by the union ministry of home affairs in 1997.

The decision certainly could have been avoided, especially since the matter is likely to be settled by the Supreme Court.

A final decision on who — the AAP government in Delhi or the BJP-led government at the Centre — is right may be settled once the Constitution bench of the Supreme Court delivers its judgment. The plea was filed by the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP government, challenging the Delhi High Court judgment holding that the Lieutenant-Governor of Delhi was the administrative head and was not bound by the aid and advice of the council of ministers.

However, from a purely political point of view, the Centre’s “clarification” of 10 April, informing the L-G that the posts of advisers were not among the list of posts approved, will only strengthen the charge of bias often levelled at the Narendra Modi government by Kejriwal and AAP.

Many will wonder, rightly so, that if the Modi government feels so strongly about upholding the spirit of the Constitution and uses old office memoranda (OM) to settle scores with an opposition government, why doesn’t it use similar rules to pull up BJP-ruled state governments when they violate the provisions of the Constitution?

Why, some may wonder, does the Centre allow several important constitutional posts to remain vacant for a long time if it feels so strongly about upholding the spirit of the Constitution?

The growing feeling is that the L-G, appointed by the Centre, keeps behaving like the hand-maiden of the ruling party at the Centre, and helps the AAP play the martyr card, which works well with its core constituency.

It is true that under the Constitution, the “elected” government of the NCT of Delhi is not running the affairs of a full-fledged state. For all practical purposes, some of them listed in an earlier piece, Delhi is a Union Territory with an elected assembly. The Centre, especially the home ministry, needs to consider the possibility that the advisers appointed by the Kejriwal government maybe doing some good.

In the spirit of federalism, the home ministry could have asked the Delhi government to seek post-facto approval for the posts that were created. This would have shown the Centre has been cooperative, especially since post-facto approvals are almost routine rather than an exception in the Modi regime.

But now that the action has been taken, one can only hope that the Supreme Court will finally settle the contentious issue of what powers does a “duly-elected” government really enjoy, and what are some of the things that it can’t do.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. Meri ek khamoshi bematlab ke shot se achha. Judiciary is shouting that political parties r interfering & attacking, but why such situation has arrived, bcoz judiciary is not interested in giving justice to poor & common citizens but custodian of super riches & powerful ruling leaders. Only you can change things by working in the interest of common of this country. Baki to sab hi theek baa

  2. It looks like everybody every institution is just acting the way modi want. Even SC is not exception now. That’s why it all powers must have not vested in single person. IF this happens no different remain between china, russia, and India. This time lets make a balance government..Opposition needs to be strong…otherwise future of India is dark nothing else.

  3. It is true under modi there is no federalism the greatest injustice has been done to south Indians Even though they contribute huge amount of taxes but nothing has been given to them and 15th finance commission which is giving rewards for failure of northern India modi should step down as PM of India to protect India orelse Nation may divide into Two

  4. I don’t what our nation is going to..the centre should the freedoms when it has not authority over Delhi …this remind me of Nayak movie

  5. Even Supreme Court Judges are feeling helpless and they have to come out in public for help..
    Everything is under Modi be it Supreme Court or Election Commission or CBI and will work on their directions..
    Is se to acchha congress kaa raaz hee tha kum se kum judiciary pe bharosaa to thaa logon ko..

  6. Atishi Marlena did fabulous work and Raghav Chadha was working on a token salary on Re.1/- per month. Madhya Pradesh government has appointed Babas as Ministers and Centre has preferred to remove the advisors appointed by Delhi government. Narendra Modi is following the spirit of “Maximum interference, No Governance” as far as opposition governments are concerned. Long live Modi !

  7. कुछ भी कर लो हम फिर से वोट आम आदमी पार्टी को ही देगें।

  8. A spineless SC will toe the centre’s line as long as Dipak Mishra is CJ, clearly they don’t think it’s urgent to settle the rights of a state government elected by the people. It’s a sad state when the people’s needs get sidelined for the power games of the powerful.

  9. If a death of a dear can take 20 year to decide in Salman case.Because his life may be 100 year.
    Powers issue in New Delhi should be decided by Supreme Court immediately life of government is electaed only for five years

  10. The manner in which the Central govt, via LG, has been nullifying or creating hurdles in policy as well as day to day governance, can only be termed as anti people approach. And to top it, any thing negative happening in Delhi, the same ruling party polenta fingers at Delhi govt. what would you term this as- NATIONALISTIC OR ANTI PEOPLE? Fact of the matter is that all forces are being directed towards somehow showing Delhi govt as non performing for no other reason but political gain. Both national parties have never been able to digest the humiliation Delhi electorate gave them and both unite their anger and opposition, even if this is the only matter they have shown UNITY. it is different that people now have seen through the game being played and also appreciate what Delhi govt has achieved in areas where they could effectively govern, e.g., Education and Health. Incidentally, these are the two subjects that all govts hitherto have neglected consistently.

  11. It seems Supreme Court itself is playing petty on this topic by not delivering the verdict. Supreme court needs to show some hustle and come out with a decisive verdict on the topic asap.

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