LG's decision would prevail in disputes: SC

The Supreme Court's observations came while hearing the AAP government's petition challenging Delhi High Court's order that ruled the Lieutenant Governor was the national capital's administrator.

Justice Bhushan too asked Subramanium to be specific and cite instances of Lt. Governor standing in the way of Delhi government.

The hearing by the two judge bench on Delhi government's appeals had seen the court favouring a balance in the exercise of powers by the Delhi government and the Lt. Governor for good governance.

Opened the arguments on behalf of the Delhi government, advocate Gopal Subramanium emphasised the special provision of Article 239 AA that grants statehood to Delhi.

As Subramanium sought to blame Lt. Governor for creating hurdles in the functioning of Delhi government, Justice Chandrachud said that every government has to function within the parameters of the constitution and the Article 239AA defines the powers of Delhi government and Union Territory.

"More than 1.14 lakh vacancies are there, but I can not fill it up and have to seek LG's permission".

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AAP government's counsel pointed out that an elected government can not be without any power.

Subramanium said that LG was taking several executive decisions and a harmonious interpretation of Article 239AA is required to fulfil the constitutional mandate for a democratically elected government in Delhi. Justice Chandrachud ruled that the LG can not sit on files for long and has to pass it forth to the President of India in case of a difference of opinion.

"We issue notice. Let the matter be listed for hearing on November 13", the bench said.

"Parliament's supremacy is not doubted but legislative existence needs to be accepted and both can co-exist". Even civil servants do not recognise the ministers as heads of departments.

The bench observed that when laws were already there, Delhi government is free to implement it and where there are no laws, the legislature can make it in concurrence with LG and if there is a difference of opinion, then LG's decision is binding. The new notification, however, said that in police and other service matters, the L-G could take decisions independently.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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