Sisodia to LG: Delhi govt accountable to people, not MHA

Sisodia to LG: Delhi govt accountable to people, not MHA

Sisodia to LG: Delhi govt accountable to people, not MHA

Sticking to its guns in the CNG Fitness scam probe issue after the Centre declared the same to be "legally invalid and void", the ruling AAP has told Lt Governor Najeeb Jung that Delhi government is accountable to the people and not to the Union Home Ministry.

In a letter to Jung, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said that the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) set up by Delhi government will continue with its work and, if the MHA is aggrieved, it may approach the judiciary.

The AAP government's move comes a few days after Jung conveyed the MHA's decision to it that the CoI to probe the alleged multi-crore CNG Fitness Scam had been declared "legally invalid and void ab initio".

"I wish to state that the Government of NCT of Delhi is not a subordinate department of Ministry of Home Affairs. (It) is a constitutionally-elected government which is accountable to the people of Delhi and the Delhi Legislative Assembly.

"(Delhi government) is not accountable to MHA," Sisodia said in the letter. The AAP government had earlier this month decided to set up a CoI, to be headed by a retired high court judge, to probe the multi-crore CNG fitness scam in which a number of officials of the previous Sheila Dikshit-led Congress government were under the scanner.

However, paving the way for yet another confrontation with the AAP dispensation, the LG later conveyed to it the MHA's position that the move to appoint a CoI was "legally invalid and void".

Sisodia, however, maintained to the LG that the MHA does not have any power to declare its order as void. "Under the Constitution, MHA does not have power to declare any order of Delhi government void. It is only the judiciary which has the power to declare any order of Delhi government null and void.

"MHA seems to be attempting to encroach upon the domain of the judiciary, which is dangerous. Therefore, the communication from MHA, at best could be treated as MHA's opinion," he said.

Sisodia further said that the MHA has issued the communication at a time when the matter is sub-judice as the setting up of the CoI was also challenged in a PIL in Delhi High Court.
He said the petitioner demanded that the notification setting up the CoI should be stayed and added that the court even refused to issue a formal notice to Delhi government in the matter.

"Court has only asked the government to file a short affidavit in the matter. The next date of hearing is on September 23," the Deputy Chief Minister said. "I would urge you (LG) to kindly inform MHA that if at all MHA is aggrieved, they may like to approach judiciary for the same. The commission will continue to work and we expect every one to cooperate with the Commission's proceedings," he added.