NEW DELHI: Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday slammed Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal for holding a Covid-19 review meeting with officials "behind the back of elected government.
"It is against the Constitution and Supreme Court judgement to hold such parallel meetings behind the back of an elected government. We are democracy," the Delhi chief minister said on Twitter.
Kejriwal's strong reaction came in response to a tweet shared by L-G showing pictures of him meeting Delhi officials to review the Covid-19 situation in the state.
Reviewed the COVID-19 situation in Delhi and future preparedness with Chief Secretary, ACS (Home&Health), Divisiona… https://t.co/jtCnnAamkY— LG Delhi (@LtGovDelhi) 1628080888000
"People have elected a Council of Ministers. If you have any questions, please ask your ministers. Avoid holding direct meetings with officers. Let's respect democracy, sir," Kejriwal said.
During the meeting, Baijal stressed on the need for coordinated action by all stakeholders for effective management of Covid-19. He asked the state health department to ensure commissioning of all PSA plants, LMO storage tanks and Cryogenic bottling plants latest by August 31.
The tussle between the AAP government and Lieutenant Governor had revived after the home ministry introduced a Bill in Parliament that gives overarching power to the LG of Delhi.
According to the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Bill, 2021, the "government" in the city would mean the "Lieutenant Governor" in the context of any law to be made by the Legislative Assembly.
The Delhi government will have to take permission from the LG before taking any action on subjects that had so far been under its control. These include anti-corruption, education, health, social welfare, tourism, central jail, excise, some colleges as well as hospitals and transport.
The LG can also pass directions to officials directly without consulting the city government while elected representatives will have to take the LG's consent for the implementation of any of its orders as well as transfers.