The Delhi government on Wednesday asked the Supreme Court to urgently list its petition challenging a law that gives the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Central government control over the postings and transfers of bureaucrats in the national capital, Live Law reported.
Senior advocate Abhishek Singhvi, representing the Delhi government, urged a bench comprising Chief Justice DY Chandrachud and Justices JB Pardiwala and Manoj Misra to list the case before a five-judge Constitution bench.
“I can’t express the agony of the [Delhi] administration,” the lawyer said. “The civil servants are not following orders.”
The judges, however, said that there are older Constitution bench matters that are pending as well.
“We will appoint Shadan Farasat as nodal counsel,” the court said, reported PTI. “We will ask for the common compilation to be prepared. Prepare your submissions in four weeks and then you can mention it for listing.”
The Centre had promulgated the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Ordinance on May 19 to create an authority to administer the transfer and posting of bureaucrats serving the government.
The ordinance nullified a Supreme Court verdict passed on May 11 stating that the Aam Aadmi Party government in the national capital has legislative power over bureaucrats in all departments other than public order, police and land.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah had told Parliament that the law did not violate the Supreme Court judgement. He had argued that it had been introduced to safeguard the rights of the people and not to usurp power.
But Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had accused the Centre of trying to usurp power through the backdoor and of insulting the people of the city. “The entire country is seeing how you snatched the power of the vote through this Bill,” he added. “You are making the people of Delhi slaves and rendering them helpless.”