New Delhi [India], October 5 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Tuesday said it would set up a three-judge Bench to hear Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government's plea on the contentious issue of who should control administrative services in Delhi.
A Bench of Chief Justice NV Ramana, Justices Surya Kant and Hima Kohli told senior advocate Rahul Mehra, appearing for the Delhi government, that it will constitute a Bench after the Dussehra break.
The plea arises out of a 2019 split verdict. Mehra mentioned the Delhi government's plea for urgent listing and hearing.
Mehra said, "It is the matter pertaining to the issue of services which find mention in Entry 41 of List II of the Constitution. The two-judge Bench expressed divergent views and the matter was before a three-judge judge Bench. Since the entire administrative control vests currently with the Centre, it is an important issue and impedes on the ability of the Delhi government to govern and implement its policy."
On February 14, 2019, a two-judge Bench of the top court had delivered a split verdict on the question of powers of the GNCTD and Union government over services and referred the matter to a three-judge Bench.
While Justice Ashok Bhushan had ruled the Delhi government has no power at all over administrative services. Justice AK Sikri, however, had said the transfer or posting of officers in top echelons of the bureaucracy (joint director and above) can only be done by the Central government and the view of the lieutenant governor would prevail in case of a difference of opinion for matters relating to other bureaucrats.
The two-judge Bench, which was hearing pleas on six matters pertaining to a long-running conflict between the Centre and the Delhi government, had given a unanimous order on the remaining five issues except for the control over services.
Governance of the national capital has witnessed a power struggle between the Centre and the Delhi government since the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) came to power in 2014.
The Delhi government has been at loggerheads with the present L-G and his predecessor. (ANI)