SC defers decision on Delhi govt formation; Kejriwal says Najeeb Jung batting for BJP

The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted Centre time till October 10 to reply about the outcome of political consultations on government formation in Delhi on a petition by Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP.  

Last Updated: Sep 09, 2014, 12:42 PM IST
SC defers decision on Delhi govt formation; Kejriwal says Najeeb Jung batting for BJP

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted Centre time till October 10 to reply about the outcome of political consultations on government formation in Delhi on a petition by Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP.

A five-judge Constitution Bench, headed by Justice HL Dattu, said that it is not going to keep this matter pending for a longer period of time and asked the Centre to inform it about the decision to be taken by the President of India on the LG's letter. The apex court granted four weeks time to the Centre and directed it to file its response by October 10.

"What is the possible time by which his Excellency would take a decision?" the bench asked Additional Solicitor General (ASG) PS Narsimha, who was appearing for the Centre.

While appearing in court, central government's counsel told SC that LG Governor Najeeb Jung has sent a proposal to President Pranab Mukherjee and he is seriously considering and taking legal advice on the matter.

Meanwhile, speaking to reporters AAP convenor Arvind Kejriwal said that his party has complete faith in judicial system and he would get justice in this matter.

However, the former Delhi chief minister questioned Najeeb Jung's intentions, saying that he was unable to understand on what basis the Delhi LG has given his report to the President as the BJP had given it in writing earlier that they don't have the numbers and won't form government in the national capital.

“It seems that the Delhi LG is batting for the BJP,” he said.

Last week, Jung sent a report to President seeking permission to call the single largest party to take a shot at power though it is well short of majority in the Assembly.

In his report, Jung gave a detailed analysis of the political situation in the city and underlined the need to have an elected government in the city which is under President's rule since February 17 following resignation of the Aam Aadmi Party government which was in power for 49 days.

The Lt Governor said though no party has staked claim to form government in Delhi, the BJP could be invited to take the reins as it is the single largest party in the Assembly.

The apex court had earlier asked the Centre to take a decision on holding assembly elections in Delhi in response to the AAP's petition asking for the dissolution of the Assembly and fresh polls.

Both AAP and Congress have been demanding immediate dissolution of the Assembly, saying keeping it in suspended animation will encourage horse-trading.

In the 2012 Delhi polls, while BJP had won 31 seats in the 70-member house, AAP had won 28 seats and Congress managed to bag only 8.

BJP, the single party has 28 MLAs in a House of 70. Its ally Akali Dal has one MLA. BJP had won 31 seats but three party legislators Harsh Vardhan, Ramesh Bidhuri and Pervesh Verma were elected to Lok Sabha and had to resign their Assembly seats.

Delhi has been under President's rule since February 17 following resignation of Arvind Kejriwal-led-AAP government which was in power for 49 days.

The government led by Kejriwal had resigned on February 14 after the party's pet project, the Janlokpal Bill, could not be passed due to opposition from BJP and Congress.

President's Rule was imposed in Delhi on February 17. The Lt Governor had not favoured dissolution of the Delhi Assembly as recommended by the Council of Ministers headed by Kejriwal and kept the Assembly in suspended animation.