New Delhi, May 31
The Delhi Government has moved the Supreme Court challenging an order of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) setting up a high-level committee led by Lt Governor (L-G) VK Saxena for dealing with solid waste management in the national capital.
The petition seeks to set aside the Feb 16 order passed by the NGT, saying the Delhi Government was “aggrieved by the executive powers conferred on the L-G vide the impugned order over areas in which only the Delhi Government enjoys competence.”
In its appeal against the February 16 NGT order, the Delhi Government said the effect of the green tribunal’s order was to “bypass the elected government completely” and hand over the power with regard to the management of solid waste to the L-G and the central government which is in violation of the constitutional scheme.
The petition comes at a time when the L-G and the elected AAP government are in a protracted legal battle over control of the bureaucracy in the national capital.
“The effect of the NGT’s orders cannot be to confer executive powers to an authority that cannot, under the constitutional scheme, be conferred on it and is instead vested with the elected government,” the Delhi Government submitted.
The L-G was bound to act only on aid and advice of the council of ministers headed by the Chief Minister, the petition contended.
The Delhi Government recently filed a separate plea a few days ago against another NGT order naming the L-G as the chairperson of a High-Level Committee (HLC) on Yamuna pollution.
The latest petition filed on Tuesday sought setting aside of the final order of February 16 passed by the NGT, saying the Delhi government was “aggrieved by the executive powers conferred on the L-G vide the Impugned Order over areas in which only the elected government of the NCT of Delhi enjoys competence.” “The NGT has appointed the L-G as the chairman of a panel when there was absolutely no statutory or constitutional power conferred upon the L-G to chair such committee,” it said.
The panel set up by the NGT comprises the chief secretary, and secretaries of the Irrigation, Forest and Environment, Agriculture, and Finance Departments of the Delhi government.
Besides these officers, the panel includes the Chief Executive Officer, Delhi Jal Board, Vice Chairman of the DDA, Secretary or his nominee in the Ministry of Agriculture, DG Forest or his nominee, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Government of India, and some other officials.
“Further, the remedial steps as suggested by the NGT such as setting up new waste processing facilities, augmenting existing waste processing facilities and remediation of legacy waste sites are all which require budgetary allocations that are authorised by the Delhi Government and hence the role of the elected government becomes extremely necessary in this regard,” it said.
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