Kejriwal appeals to Centre to take back bill on powers of Delhi LG

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New Delhi, Mar 17 (PTI) Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday urged the Centre to take back the bill that seeks to define certain roles and powers of the Lieutenant Governor of Delhi and said the AAP dispensation is ready to even fall at the Modi government's feet for its withdrawal.

He asked where the chief minister will go if the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Bill, 2021 brought by the Centre becomes a law.

'Do elections, votes and our 62 out of 70 seats don't mean anything?' Kejriwal further asked.

Speaking at a protest organised by his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) against the GNCTD (Amendment) Bill, Kejriwal said, 'I want to appeal to the Centre to take back the GNCTD Bill, don't cheat the people with this legislation.' He alleged that the Centre wants to weaken his government through this bill.

The BJP has brought this bill as it is scared of the AAP's reach in other states, Kejriwal claimed.

'That is why they are trying to stop our development work in Delhi,' he charged.

The chief minister said now there are two tasks in front of his government -- the first is to put the power back in the hands of the public and the second is to ensure that no development work stops in the national capital.

'Now whether we have to plead with them (Centre) and fall at their feet for this or pull their hands... we will do it,' Kejriwal said.

Delhi ministers, AAP MLAs and councillors also took part in the protest against the GNCTD (Amendment) Bill, which, according to the Kejriwal-led party, gives overarching power to the LG.

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia claimed the GNCTD (Amendment) Bill is against 'deshbhakti' (patriotism) and aims to stop the development of Delhi.

Environment Minister Gopal Rai alleged that by bringing this bill, the BJP is seeking to enter Delhi through the backdoor.

'After losing the (assembly) elections, the BJP brought this bill to enter Delhi through the backdoor. If you have the guts, fight and win the elections. Prove your worth with your work,' he said.

The GNCTD (Amendment) Bill, 2021 was introduced in Lok Sabha by Union Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy on Monday.

According to the bill, the 'government' in the city would mean the 'Lieutenant Governor' in context of any law made by the legislative assembly.

The bill also makes it mandatory for the Delhi government to take the opinion of the LG before any executive action. PTI NIT UZM DIV DIV