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Is Delhi officially the capital of India?

Is Delhi officially the capital of India?
Highlights

The Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi has been engaged in a constant power tussle with the Centre ever since it assumed charge. The issue escalated on...

New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi has been engaged in a constant power tussle with the Centre ever since it assumed charge. The issue escalated on Wednesday in the Supreme Court, when the Delhi government raised a rather unusual argument: Has the Constitution of India or any law passed by Parliament declared Delhi as the National Capital of India?

During the hearing of pleas on who has the power to govern Delhi, the Arvind Kejriwal government asked the Supreme Court. Senior advocate Indira Jaising was representing Delhi, while a bench constituted by Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A K Sikri, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandradhud and Ashok Bhushan was hearing the case.

"Capital is not defined by any law. Tomorrow, the Centre can decide to move the capital to somewhere else. The Constitution also does not say the capital is to be Delhi. We know that the British moved the capital from Calcutta to Delhi," Jaising said. Though there is a National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, it does not constitute Delhi as the capital of India, Jaising said, while arguing for the executive power in specific areas. However, the bench did not comment on this issue.

Jaising argued that the Delhi government should have unhindered executive power in the field of social welfare subjects like women's welfare, employment, education, sanitation and healthcare.

"Everything boils down to day-to-day administration. How can the Centre say that you (Delhi government) cannot have the executive power? I can understand this position on legislative powers," Jaising said. The bench said, "All states have to work in cooperation with the Centre. No legislation indicated the vertical division of executive power."

Earlier, the Kejriwal government had accused the LG of making a 'mockery of democracy'. The Delhi government said that Anil Baijal was either taking decisions of an elected government or substituting them without having any power.

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