NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court today sought a response from AAP government on a plea challenging its notification for setting up a commission to inquire into the allotment of work relating to CNG fitness certificates in the transport department.
A bench headed by Chief Justice G Rohini asked the Delhi government to file a short affidavit within two weeks stating whether Lieutenant Governor (LG) of Delhi approval is required to issue any such notification or not.
During the brief hearing, counsel for petitioner Rajender Prasad, a retired inspector of Transport Department, said the state government had "arbitrarily" issued a notification August 11 setting up a commission of inquiry without prior approval of the LG and sought its quashing.
The bench then asked the counsel to show the legal provisions on how the prior approval of LG was required for issuing such a notification. "What is your stand in the matter," the bench asked.
The counsel replied that under the commission of inquiry Act 1952, the competent authority to take decision on this behalf is LG.
Senior advocate Dayan Krishnan appearing for the Delhi government said this was purely a state subject and under the rules passed by Centre, there is no need to seek LG's approval.
The bench however asked the Krishnan to file a short affidavit within two weeks and posted the matter for further hearing on September 23.
The petitioner has said, "the said notification is not only bad for the reason that it is beyond the powers of the government of NCT of Delhi to arbitrarily constitute the commission of inquiry to inquire into all aspects of the award of work related to CNG Fitness Certificate in the transport department, government of NCT of Delhi and all other irregularities."
The petition further said, "under the circumstances, it is prayed that this court may declare the impugned notification dated August 11, as null and void and quash the same being issued without any authority."
In 2012, an FIR was registered by the Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB) under provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act and sections of IPC and in the probe it was concluded that there was evidence against the officials of transport department and accordingly, prosecution sanction was sought.
The ACB had also sought permission to examine former chief secretaries D M Spolia and P K Tripathi.
"The LG after consideration of the facts and material on record came to the conclusion that no case was made out under the prevention of corruption act or sections of IPC against any of the officers. The LG also rejected the permission to examine D Sapolia and P K Tripathi," the plea said.