NEW DELHI: The Delhi Assembly, dominated by the Aam Aadmi Party, on Thursday passed a resolution stating that the appointment of Rakesh Asthana as the new Delhi Police commissioner is “unconstitutional” and should be withdrawn.
Home minister Satyendar Jain slammed the Centre for appointing Asthana as the city police chief, alleging that he is on a “special mission” to harass the AAP and its members. Accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of appointing his “henchman” as the police commissioner, ruling party MLA Sanjeev Jha tabled the resolution in the House and called the Centre’s move “illegal”.
“The appointment (of Asthana) is against the orders of the Supreme Court. It is the duty of the Centre to follow the direction of the apex court. I think he (Asthana ) was not eligible to be appointed. The Centre should follow rules and regulations,” said Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.
Due to the unique governance structure of the national capital, AAP has been over the past few years locking horns with the Delhi Police on various issues. Now, the party is worried about the appointment of Asthana, who, the party thinks, is close to the BJP at the Centre. Many AAP MLAs have cases against them and the worry within the party is that now Asthana might push the pedal on pending cases, mainly against the AAP members.
However, the BJP welcomed the appointment of Asthana. “The ruling party is scared of Asthana. Only the corrupt and terrorists need to worry about him. He is a decorated officer and the ruling party is poorly informed about his great achievements in the past. AAP should focus on more serious issues related to development of Delhi,” said Leader of Opposition Ramvir Singh Bidhuri.