High Court adjourns plea claiming two-day assembly session by Kejriwal govt was illegal

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Delhi High Court today told a petitioner, who has sought declaration of the two-day sitting of Delhi Legislative Assembly that ended yesterday and its decisions as “illegal”, that he had impleaded wrong respondents.

Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva adjourned the matter to February 6 to give time to the petitioner to implead the correct authorities as respondents, as the court was of the view that Chief Secretary and Delhi government were incorrectly made respondents.

“Who is calling the session? Chief Secretary is the Executive. Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD) is not the legislative assembly. You have impleaded the wrong respondents. You have impleaded the Executive. Is the legislative assembly subordinate to GNCTD? GNCTD is nobody to call the session,” the court said.

To this, advocate R P Luthra, appearing for the petitioner, said the session was called “at the instance of the Chief Minister” and said the assembly was a wing of the government.

“Legislative Assembly is an independent entity,” the court said in response and adjourned the matter.

At the start of the hearing, the court asked Luthra, appearing for petitioner Prashant Kumar Umrao, as to what survived in the petition as the session had ended yesterday.

The court also said the petitioner will have to show why the sessions cannot be broken into parts as in the instant situation where the two-day session of January 17-18, 2017, was part of last year’s Winter Session.

The petitioner’s lawyer contended that sessions cannot be broken into parts and alleged that the latest two day session was held illegally.

Since it was illegal, the “consequential relief” of declaring as “void and illegal” the decisions taken during the two days, would survive, he claimed.

The High Court had yesterday also refused to give an urgent hearing to the matter and listed the petition today.

The petition has claimed that by not inviting the Lieutenant Governor to address the Delhi Legislative Assembly, the AAP government was “dishonouring” its office.

It further said the rules stipulate that at commencement of the first session each year, LG shall address the House.

Yesterday when the sixth segment of the ongoing fourth session of the Assembly commenced, Leader of Opposition Vijender Gupta had objected to it saying by not inviting new Lt Governor Anil Baijal to address the “first session of the year”, the government has “violated and misused” rules.

Speaker Ram Niwas Goel had rejected Gupta’s charge, saying this sitting was not a new session in a new calender year but continuation of an ongoing one.

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