Calling the mandate given to it a vote for continuity, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has decided to keep its cabinet the same as it was in the last term.
Party insiders, though, say the position of advisors might be revived and newly elected MLAs such as Atishi and Raghav Chadha might be brought back into the government’s framework.
Both were appointed as advisors — Atishi in the education department and Chadha in finance — along with seven others during the previous term. However, a controversy broke in 2018 after their appointments were deemed illegal by the General Administration Department (GAD) of the Delhi government. The advisors — except for Chadha who had stepped down earlier — had to be removed.
AAP had condemned the move and said the decision was a way to stall the working of the government.
“The cabinet will remain the same, though a few departments might be allotted to different people. We are looking to bring back the posts of advisors, as has been the practice in the Delhi government previously as well as in other states. Delhi’s cabinet cannot exceed seven members, which means that one minister holds several departments and some areas are ignored,” said a senior party leader, who did not want to be named.
In the previous cabinet, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia was heading 14 departments, including education, finance, planning, urban development, vigilance and information and technology.
When the appointments of the advisors was deemed illegal, the order passed by the GAD had said that no prior “approval of the Centre has been taken for creation of said posts on which these persons have been appointed on co-terminus basis, which is a requirement as per MHA’s rules”.
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