Kejri releases draft Bill seeking full statehood for Delhi

Kejri releases draft Bill seeking full statehood for Delhi

Kejri releases draft Bill seeking full statehood for Delhi

 A draft proposal on giving full statehood to the elected government in Delhi was released on Wednesday by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in his fresh bid to control police, bureaucrats and land issues.

The proposal, which is in the form of a draft bill – The State of Delhi Bill, 2016 – was uploaded on the Delhi government website for seeking suggestions till June 30.

It talks of dividing the city into two administrative zones – New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) jurisdiction area and the area serviced by municipal corporations.

Kejriwal wants the elected Delhi government to control police and land issues in MCD area and the Centre to control the police and land issues in NDMC area – which would include the Delhi Cantonment.

At present, Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung, as a representative of the central government, controls the police, public order, services and land matters in the entire city, including both NDMC and MCD areas.

Kejriwal’s decision to start a debate on statehood is likely to add to the friction between the Aam Aadmi Party government and the Centre which have sparred frequently over transfer of bureaucrats and control over the Delhi Police.

The draft proposes a set up consisting of a governor and a council of ministers in Delhi, like in other states. Under the proposed set-up, the Governor will assume the power of the existing Lieutenant Governor.

Delhi would also cease to be a Union Territory, once the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991 gets repealed with the enactment of the new statehood law.
The statehood draft looks to replace the existing entity of the National Capital Territory with State of Delhi. It also proposes amendments in the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act, the Delhi Development Authority Act and the Delhi Police Act.

Kejriwal said the statehood issue does not need political posturing but serious consensus building exercise.