The Union Cabinet on Saturday recommended the President’s rule in Delhi, thereby putting the Assembly under suspended animation.
In his report to the President earlier in the day, Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung refused to go by the recommendation of the outgoing AAP government which had called for the dissolution of the 70-member Assembly and fresh elections.
While tendering his resignation as the Chief Minister after failing to introduce the Jan Lokpal Bill in the Assembly on Friday, Kejriwal recommended the immediate dissolution of the House. Jung, however, didn’t accept the recommendation that keeps room for the formation of another government.
The Cabinet decision accepting Jung recommendation will come into effect after the President promulgates a notification. The decision will require Parliament’s approval for the state to come under Article 356 of the Constitution.
The Ministry of Home Affairs, meanwhile, has sought the opinion of the Ministry of Law and Justice and all the facts were put before the Cabinet.
The Assembly elections late last year threw up a hung verdict. The AAP, having the second highest number of seats, was invited to form a government with Congress support. This was after the BJP, which was the largest party but short of a few seats, declined to form a government. Kejriwal questioned the move to put the Assembly under suspended animation and said Jung was “openly flouting” the decision taken by a majority government.
“When the BJP and AAP want immediate elections in Delhi, why is the Assembly under suspended animation? I don’t know on what basis the Lieutenant Governor has taken the decision and it is completely wrong because any recommendation by an elected government is normally binding. Will it not encourage horse-trading?” he said.
With 32 seats, the BJP remained non-committal to forming the government and said it was ready to face fresh polls. “There is no over-enthusiasm about forming the government. The ball right now is in the Lieutenant Governor’s court and let him decide. We will happily accept any situation,” said BJP leader Harshvardhan.
Meanwhile, the AAP announced that the party would fight the Lok Sabha elections under Kejriwal’s leadership and launch its poll campaign on February 23 with a rally at Rohtak in Haryana. The second rally is slated to be held at Kanpur in Uttar Pradesh on March 2.
“It is clear that the AAP will contest general elections under Kejriwal’s leadership across the country,” said party leader Yogendra Yadav while announcing the launch of the AAP’s nationwide anti-corruption campaign ‘Jhadu Chalao Yatra’ from Saturday.
The party plans to organise over 2,600 yatras in 332 Lok Sabha constituencies in the next ten days. The campaign aims to target the Congress and the BJP.