In a face-off with the Centre, Delhi Assembly, which has an overwhelming majority of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLAs, today passed a resolution against Ministry of Home Affairs notification to “curtail” the powers of state Anti Corruption Branch (ACB).
The resolution, tabled by Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, was passed by voice vote while all three BJP MLAs walked out of the House at the time of voting. The resolution sought restoration of the 1993 orginal powers of Delhi ACB.
Sisodia said that as per MHA’s notification issued on July 23, 2014, ACB can register or probe corruption-related cases which only involve the officials of Delhi government, saying that “it is against the Constitution”.
“When President Rule was in Delhi, a notification was issued by MHA which seeks to curtail the powers of Delhi ACB. According to the Centre’s notification, ACB can not register or probe corruption cases against any officials of DDA, municipal corporations, Delhi Police,” Sisodia said in the House.
Sisodia said that in the last 22 years, no government at Centre had done such a thing.
The Deputy CM said that in the past, when someone used to raise his voice against corruption, people would say that corruption cannot stop completely. But during the 49-day rule of last AAP government, people then felt that corruption in the works of DDA, municipal corporations, police, government can be stopped completely”.
“In every state, ACB can register or probe corruption cases against any person living in particular state’s territory, but in Delhi, ACB can not probe the case against officials of DDA, corporations and police except officials of Delhi government,” Sisodia said.
Most AAP MLAs supported the resolution and came down heavily on the BJP-led Central government, saying that it is an attempt to curtail the powers of Delhi government.
“It is an unconstitutional step as the powers of Delhi government is being curtailed. We completely criticise it. It seems that through this notification, famous industrialists are being spared,” former law minister and AAP MLA Somnath Bharti said.