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Chief Secy row: Senior SC lawyer says L-G Najeeb Jung overstepped authority

Senior Supreme Court lawyer Rajeev Dhavan said the chief minister has a “perfect right” to a chief secretary of his choice.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Updated: May 19, 2015 12:58 pm
Arvind kejriwal, kejriwal news, Arvind kejriwal news, Najeeb Jung, Delhi chief secretary The notification is likely to be in consonance with the National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi Act, 1991, which clearly states that the L-G is the “administrative head.”

As the tug-of-war between the Centre and the Delhi government over the appointment of acting chief secretary Shakuntala Gamlin escalated, the Delhi government on Monday obtained the opinion of senior Supreme Court lawyer Rajeev Dhavan over the powers of the Lt-Governor to appoint a chief secretary.

In an indication that the Delhi government may be considering taking a legal recourse over its ongoing tussle with the Lt-Governor and the Centre, Dhavan submitted a three-page legal opinion to the Delhi government, stating that “this crisis has been created entirely by the Lt-Governor”. Dhavan wrote, “It is abundantly clear that the Lt-Governor has exceeded his authority and has turned the entire relationship between himself and the Council of Ministers on its head to jeopardise democracy and the Constitution.”

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Dhavan wrote in his opinion dated May 18, “I have been consulted on the issue as to whether the Lt-Governor can appoint a chief secretary if the Chief Minister does not do so within 40 hours.” He then cited eight points pointing out the legal provisions including those in the Constitution, the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991, Rules of Business framed by the central government under section 44.

Applying the provisions to the present row, Dhavan said the chief minister has a “perfect right” to a chief secretary of his choice. “The fact that there has been a lapse of 40 hours is not sufficient reason for the Lt-Governor to impose his choice on the chief minister especially when his urgency powers arise only when a reference is pending before the Central government.” At best, Dhavan stated, the Lt Governor can advise the CM that it is necessary to appoint a chief secretary forthwith.

“It is clearly stated that the Lt-Governor will act on the aid and advice of the chief minister in matters within the remit of legislative assembly,” he said.

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  1. Adhar Gupta
    May 19, 2015 at 7:15 am
    Is he related to RK Dhawan...if so we know where is he coming from,
    1. S
      May 19, 2015 at 10:45 am
      BJP has no respect for the Consution! It's breaking down the democracy and federal structure of our country brick by brick. I applaud Delhi Cm trying to protect our country.
      1. A
        May 19, 2015 at 7:59 am
        There is a Chief secy, of Arvind's choice. Only thing is, he has gone on a tour. In his absence what we usually call, 'acting' posting is done and in such situations, senior most in hierarchical order gets the order to fill-in till CS returns. It seems, he is out for 10 days. In 10 days, no earth-shaking things are going to happen. Since, a Govt. needs CS, acting CS may simply handle routine things. Till then, Arvind can keep her away from important things he has lined-up with his own favorite CS- now on tour. Yesterday on TV, an expert made it clear that , acting-postings follow set-norms and any contradicting posting will create peculiar situation where, a senior official will be forced to take orders from a junior. As Arvind had worked as a civil servant ( Sorry, Sir- as an Official) he must be fully aware of these practices. His b of politics is, "Throw mud at anyone/ anything- if it sticks good, or, start once again to throw mud"- LOVE ALL!
        1. A
          May 19, 2015 at 9:42 pm
          If LG can do everything on his own, then why do we need elected govt. in delhi?? Jung is not worth spitting at, he's a spineless puppet in the hands of modi doing as per his masters will. The position of governor is created with the sole purpose of creating hles when central govt. wants to play bully with the state. What more can you expect from this same Jung who was busy doing extra curricular travels while Delhi govt. was in suspended animation.
          1. A
            May 19, 2015 at 3:22 pm
            Mr. this is democracy. Leaders elected by people takes decisions here and not the appointed chamcha Bureaucrats .
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