L-G Appointment Of Aldermen In MCD

SC Notice To L-G Against Appointment Of Aldermen In MCD

L-G Appointment Of Aldermen In MCD

The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued a notice to Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena on a plea of the Delhi government challenging the appointment of ‘aldermen’ by the L-G in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) house.

A bench of Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud and Justices Justices PS Narasimha and JB Pardiwala posted the matter for hearing on April 10.
After Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) won the municipal elections, the Lt Governor appointed 10 aldermen that were opposed by the Delhi government.

The petition of the Delhi government sought the quashing of the orders dated January 3 and 4 whereby the Lieutenant Governor nominated 10 persons to the MCD.

The plea stated that the Lieutenant Governor has “illegally” appointed 10 nominated members to the Municipal Corporation of Delhi on his own initiative, not on the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers.

This is the first time since Article 239AA came into effect in 1991 that such a nomination has been made by the Lieutenant Governor completely by-passing the elected government, thereby arrogating to an unelected office a power that belongs to the duly elected government, the Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government stated.

It sought a direction “to nominate members to the Municipal Corporation of Delhi under Section 3(3)(b)(i) of the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act, 1957, in accordance with the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers.”

Neither the section nor any other provision of law says anywhere that such nomination is to be made by the Administrator in his discretion. As such, under Article 239AA of the Constitution, the word “Administrator” must necessarily be read as Administrator/Lieutenant Governor, acting on the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers, and the Lieutenant Governor was bound to make the nominations on the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers, the plea added.

In the present case, Delhi L-G was not been vested with any discretionary authority to make nominations to the MCD under either a constitutional provision or any statutory provision, the plea said.

“Accordingly, the only two courses of action open to him were to either accept the proposed names duly recommended to him for nomination to MCD by the elected government, or to differ with the proposal, and refer the same to the President. It was not open to him to make nominations on his own initiative, completely circumventing the elected government. As such, the nominations made by the Lieutenant Governor are ultra vires and illegal, and are consequently liable to be quashed,” the plea added. (ANI)

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