NEW DELHI: While continuing to hear the case pertaining to interpret Article 239AA that gave special powers to Delhi, the Supreme Court on Tuesday observed that “harmony should be there between the state government and Lieutenant Governor (LG) for smooth functioning of the state and difference of opinion should not be trivial”.
The hearing commenced before the five-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra on the power tussle between the Centre and Delhi’s AAP government over the LG’s administrative powers. “There should be participative governance. There can’t be day-to-day interference by governor. Even if there is, has to be value oriented, reason oriented,” the bench observed.
Separation of power has a very important meaning. The clause which state that council of ministers will work on aid and advice of LG is an executive power. At present, LG demands for file and issue a notice to all officers to follow his instructions and not CM? Then what is the purpose of having CM?”
This led the Chief Justice to state, “Difference of opinion between LG and CM should not be in matters of triviality. LG should conduct his constitutional duties keeping in mind that he is an august head of the UT which is for harmonious governance and to maintain citizen’s trust.”
“Delhi government provisions giving extra ordinary power to LG. Delhi government can LG claim without following provisio say that Union Territory has an overriding power on state decisions,” Subramaniam said.
However, the bench clarified stating the provisions of the Constitution, the government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi Act and the Transaction of Business of the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Rules and said there was some kind of wall which distinguished Delhi from others.
“Unlike other states, if you (Delhi government) take a policy decision, then you have to intimate the Lieutenant Governor. You are bound to intimate the LG, but you cannot say that the LG has to concur,” the bench said.
“CM should get benefit of governance in accordance with rule of law laid down by constitution,” Subramaniam said.