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This article is more than 7 month old.

Explained: What does amended GNCTD Act mean for Delhi?

Mini

The Centre has notified the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Act, 2021 that gives more power to the Lieutenant Governor (L-G) over the elected government in the national capital.

Explained: What does amended GNCTD Act mean for Delhi?

The Centre has notified the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Act, 2021 that gives more power to Lieutenant Governor (L-G) Anil Baijal over the elected government in the national capital.

According to the notification issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, the provisions of the Act came into effect from April 27.

More Power to the LG

The amended Act defines the ‘government’ in Delhi means the ‘Lieutenant Governor’ and the opinion of the LG ‘shall be obtained’ before taking any executive action on decisions by the Council of Ministers of the Delhi government.

In its July 2018 judgement, the Supreme Court had ruled that while the Lieutenant Governor must be informed about Delhi cabinet decisions, his concurrence was not needed except in the case of police, public order and land.

What is the new Act?

According to the Act, "The expression 'Government' referred to in any law to be made by the Legislative Assembly shall mean the Lieutenant Governor."

The Act grants the LG  to exercise his power ‘entrusted to him under proviso to clause (4) of Article 239AA’ in selected cases. Article 239AA of the Constitution of India deals with the special provisions for the National Capital Territory of Delhi.

The Act makes it compulsory for the AAP government in Delhi to obtain the opinion of the LG on all executive matters.

The controversy around the new amendments

The amendment Bill, which sought to enhance the powers of the lieutenant governor (LG) by making changes to the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991, was passed by the Lok Sabha on March 22 amid a walkout by the Congress, AAP and other Opposition parties.

The Bill was passed in Rajya Sabha on March 24. The Opposition has termed the Bill anti-democracy and anti-Constitution. The Congress had walked out of the Rajya Sabha even before the voting on the GNCTD (Amendment) Bill, 2021.

Soon after the Bill was passed, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal called the passing of the Bill was a sad day for Indian democracy and that he would continue to struggle to restore the power back to the people.

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