SC verdict on AAP-Centre power tussle: Key flashpoints between L-Gs Najeeb Jung, Anil Baijal and Arvind Kejriwal

The Supreme Court has delivered its judgment in the heated Delhi AAP government versus Lieutenant-Governor Anil Baijal matter, ruling that while the L-G cannot operate independently, Delhi cannot receive full statehood. Ever since taking office, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has had a tough time navigating through the unique constitutional status of Delhi, which accords it two centres of power. Former L-G Najeeb Jung had resigned in 2016 following his differences with the Delhi chief minister, and now it's Baijal. Here's a look at some of the key flashpoints between the Delhi chief minister and the National Capital's L-Gs:

 SC verdict on AAP-Centre power tussle: Key flashpoints between L-Gs Najeeb Jung, Anil Baijal and Arvind Kejriwal

File image of Delhi L-G Anil Baijal and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. PTI

Kejriwal versus Najeeb Jung

The tussle between Kejriwal and Jung started way back in 2014 when Kejriwal had resigned as Delhi chief minister after Jung had sent the then Delhi govt's Jan Lokpal Bill to the Law Ministry for Centre's nod.

15-17 May, 2015: The appointment of Shakuntala Gamlin as the acting chief secretary of Delhi became a major flashpoint in 2015, which led to an all-out war between the two in Delhi. Kejriwal terms the appointment of Gamlin by then L-G Jung as "unconstitutional" and asked Gamlin not to take charge. But Gamlin decided otherwise.

Kejriwal then locked the office of bureaucrat Anindo Majumdar, who had signed off on Gamlin's appointment, and appointed Rajender Kumar as his replacement. Jung termed both decisions of the AAP government as void.

Not willing to relent, Kejriwal met then president Pranab Mukherjee to discuss his spat with the L-G over the appointment of Gamlin.

18 May, 2015: Kejriwal instructs bureaucrats not to follow any order — written or oral — from Jung without first running it by him.

21 May, 2015: Jung terms his order "unconstitutional" saying his job was to approve transfers and postings with consultation from the Delhi CM. In response, Kejriwal asks Jung to name the Clause in the Constitution which gives him the right to "send these directives".

26 May, 2015: As the tussle between Delhi CM and L-G intensifies, the Delhi High Court instructs Delhi's anti-corruption branch to take orders from Kejriwal's government and not the Centre and that Lieutenant Governor Jung is "bound to act upon the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers".

Interestingly, according to NDTV, soon after coming to power, the NDA government "took the anti-corruption unit away" from the Delhi government and "withdrew a 1998 concession granted by BJP patriarch LK Advani that mandated the LG to consult the elected government on every decision relating to police, public order, and bureaucratic appointments".

29 May, 2015: The Supreme Court refused to step into the power battle between the Centre and the AAP government in Delhi, says the Delhi High Court will decide whether or not the Delhi CM had limited powers as notified by the home ministry.

2 June, 2015: Five officers of Bihar police join Delhi government's Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB). Jung rejects it, says he is the ACB boss.

5 June, 2015: Deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia criticises Jung says, "L-G's official residence has become the BJP's second headquarters".

8-9 June, 2015: Jung names joint commissioner of Delhi police MK Meena new chief of ACB. Kejriwal cries foul. In response, Delhi government replaces Home Secretary Dharam Pal. LG vetoes order.

20-21 July, 2015: Delhi government appoints Swati Maliwal as Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chairperson. Jung asks why his approval was not taken

December 2015: AAP government sets up an inquiry commission to probe Delhi and District Cricket Association. Jung questions its validity.

15 December, 2015: CBI raids chief minister's office. Kejriwal blames Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Jung.

31 December, 2015: IAS and DANICS officers go on mass leave a day before flagship odd-even scheme.

1 January, 2016: Kejriwal blames L-G, Centre for strike. Odd-even scheme a success.

1 June, 2016: ACB probes Delhi government's app-based premium bus service.

20 June, 2016: ACB files FIR against Kejriwal and former chief minister Sheila Dikshit in water tanker scam after Jung's okay.

4 August, 2016: Delhi High Court gives primacy to Lt Governor in Delhi's administration. AAP government moves Supreme Court.

30 August, 2016: Jung axes Delhi health secretary and PWD secretary. Kejriwal says Modi hell bent on destroying Delhi through Jung.

30 August, 2016: Jung sets up panel to probe over 400 files related to decisions taken by Delhi government. Kejriwal calls it illegal.

16 September, 2016: After chikungunya outbreak, Jung asks deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia to return from Finland.

17 September, 2016: Jung refuses to meet AAP ministers.

7 October, 2016: Jung appoints IAS officer Alka Diwan as DCW member secretary. Diwan stops payment of salaries to contractual employees of DCW. Kejriwal seeks her removal.

6 December, 2016: Jung replaces Diwan with IAS officer Dilraj Kaur. Kejriwal rejects the move, calls Jung "Hitler".

22 December, 2016: Jung resigns.

Kejriwal versus Anil Baijal

After Jung's resignation, the president appointed Anil Baijal as Delhi's new lieutenant governor on 31 December 2016. One would have expected that the tussle between Kejriwal and the L-G's office might finally come to an end with a new L-G in the office, but instead, it grew further. In what appears to be a repeat of what transpired between Jung and Kejriwal, Baijal was often accused of stalling projects, and playing a puppet of the BJP government at the Centre.

31 January, 2017: Opening its arguments in a case where it challenged the Delhi High Court verdict giving all administrative powers to the Lieutenant Governor, the AAP government said that it doesn't want full statehood for Delhi but more administrative powers. A “democratically elected government can’t be subservient to the L-G", it said.

30 March, 2017: Baijal orders recovery of Rs 97 crore from the AAP which was "splurged" on ads.

6 April, 2017: The VK Shunglu committee report claims nepotism to financial irregularities in AAP government. Following it, Baijal cancels office allotment to the party which the Delhi chief minister termed as "politically motivated".

5 May, 2017: AAP moved the Delhi High Court against L-G order to recover Rs 97 crore allegedly spent by the Delhi government on ads.

30 August, 2017: Kejriwal says that there should be no politics over mohalla clinics and urged Baijal to sort out objections over the matter across the table. Forty-five AAP MLAs had camped at the L-G office for several hours, insisting that Baijal clear the Mohalla clinics file, an act his office termed as "laying siege" to the office of a "constitutional functionary".

4 September, 2017: The L-G approves Delhi government's ambitious mohalla clinics proposal with certain riders, a week after a run-in with the AAP dispensation over the alleged delay in giving nod to the scheme.

25 September, 2017: Firing a fresh salvo, Kejriwal attacked Baijal for "stalling" the mohalla clinics file "at the behest of the BJP".

5 October, 2017: Kejriwal hit out at Baijal, saying he is "an elected CM, not a terrorist' hitting out at Baijal for "opposing" a Bill to regularise guest teachers in Delhi. Registering his objection, Baijal had said that matters relating to 'services' fall beyond the legislative competence of the Legislative Assembly of the National Capital Territory of Delhi and that the proposed legislation was not in accordance with the Constitutional scheme.

2 November, 2017: Supreme Court says Delhi L-G enjoys supremacy over state govt, but should not sit on files for too long.

20 February, 2018: Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash alleges of being assaulted at Kejriwal's residence. A group of IAS officers met Baijal and demanded that an FIR be registered and the culprits are arrested.

10 June, 2018: In a clarion call, Kejriwal exhorted party workers with the slogan 'L-G, Delhi Chodo' (L-G, Quit Delhi), as the ruling Aam Aadmi Party announced a city-wide campaign for full statehood to Delhi.

11 June, 2018: Kejriwal accuses the Delhi bureaucrats of skipping meetings called by him and his ministers. He claims that IAS officers were "on a strike for four months" and it was being "orchestrated by the PMO and coordinated by the L-G.” Seeking L-G's intervention in the matter, Kejriwal and several other AAP ministers arrive at L-G's residence seeking an appointment with Baijal in order to end IAS officers strike, but are refused. AAP ministers camp inside his house refusing to leave until Baijal agrees to meet.

17 June, 2018: The Delhi IAS Association holds a press conference refuting Kejriwal's claim. Referring to the alleged assault on Prakash by AAP legislators in Kejriwal's residence on 19 February 2018, the association claimed that they fear for their safety in front of elected representatives.

20 June, 2018: AAP calls of the dharna inside Baijal's residence.

4 July, 2018: The Delhi Supreme Court gives its verdict on who is the administrative head of Delhi.

With inputs from agencies

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Updated Date: Jul 04, 2018 13:17:22 IST