Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal unleashed a tirade against the Delhi Lieutenant Governor, V.K.Saxena, in the assembly on Tuesday.
Taking an aggressive stand, Kejriwal alleged that the Delhi LG is acting like "Viceroy" and interfering in the elected government's work without any locus standi. Reminding of his earlier comment, where he had declared himself as "Dilli Ke Maalik" i.e. the one who owns Delhi, Kejriwal said that if a proposal has been approved by the Delhi's CM and Education Minister, then who is LG to raise any objection.
Kejriwal said that it is the money of taxpayers which is being used to spent to send teachers to Finland for training. He does not understand that how could LG, instated by the President of India, demand a cost benefit analysis of the programme.
The CM began his speech expressing "hope" that one day his party would be in power at the Centre. "Time is strong and nothing is permanent. Maybe, we won't be in power tomorrow. They (BJP) are in power today, and tomorrow it can be us (AAP) in power at the Centre and have LG in Delhi while another party would have its government in the state," said Kejriwal.
"Even in that case, we will not cause obstruction like this. We respect democracy and constitution," he added.
The Delhi BJP Working President, Virender Sachdeva, expressed amusement at his statement, stating that the party which does not have even a single MP in the Lok Sabha dreams of forming government at the Centre.
In his highly political speech, CM Kejriwal attributed certain statements to the Delhi LG, claiming that it was told to him by the latter when he met him three days ago.
He claimed that Delhi LG threatened the CM that he would not allow his party to come to power in the next election. It is to be noted that the CM was making these claims on the floor of the House and hence is protected from any legal action due to the House privileges he enjoys as an elected member.
It is doubtful if the Chief Minister would repeat these statements outside of the assembly, as it could potentially result in legal action for defamation. In the past, the Chief Minister and other leaders of the AAP party have had to apologize for making unfounded statements after being found guilty in court.
The Delhi CM argued that, according to a Supreme Court ruling in 2018, the Lieutenant Governor is obligated to follow the decisions of the Council of Ministers and cannot act independently. He also challenged the LG's decision to appoint 10 aldermen to the Municipal Corporation of Delhi without consulting the Council of Ministers.
Previously, the Lieutenant Governor had defended his actions by citing the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act of 1957, which grants the "Administrator" of Delhi the power to appoint aldermen.
However, Delhi BJP leader and MLA Vijender Gupta stated that if the Chief Minister believes that the LG is not following the Supreme Court ruling, then he should take the matter to court. Gupta further alleged that the Delhi CM is prolonging the power struggle in order to distract from the government's failures.
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