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Delhi Govt vs Centre: Supreme Court refers issue of bureaucratic control in capital to Constitution Bench

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The Supreme Court on Friday referred the matter pertaining to article 239 A which is the control over administrative services in the National capital to a constitutional bench comprising of 5 judges for adjudication.

The apex court posted for hearing the matter before a five-judge bench on May 11.

Last time when the matter was up for the hearing, the bench of Supreme Court had asked “why not should it be referred to a larger bench”?

Senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi who represented the Government of Delhi questioned back the bench saying that the question is not “why not it should be referred” but “why it should be referred” to a constitutional bench.

To support his argument Advocate Singhvi said that “Everybody can find fault in some order of a constitutional bench but that does not mean everything can be referred to a larger bench. He further said the court has no luxury of time or manpower for such things.

A reference or a reconsideration arising from a constitutional bench is the rarest of rare instance,” said Sighvi.

On 28th April, the Central government asked over the control of Delhi owing to its status as a national capital. For the central government, the Solicitor General Tushar Mehta submitted that “the matter pertaining to the legal dispute should be referred to a Constitution Bench for a holistic interpretation of legal issues involved”.

The Solicitor General in his argument said that to administer the union territories like Puducherry or Lakshadweep may be totally different than the National Capital. He further said that the world views India through Delhi. All the capitals are managed like that.

The SGI then to put his point better referred to the Balakrishnan Committee report that says a National Capital should not have a situation where different political parties run it ,as such issues can cause ‘conflict with the national interest.’

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