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Union and States must embrace a collaborative federal architecture: Supreme Court on Delhi power tussle

New Delhi | The Supreme Court on Wednesday in its verdict on the power tussle between Centre and AAP led Delhi government over the administrative control of the National Capital said that the relationship between Centre and State Government should be healthy.

The Constitutional bench led by Chief Justice Deepak Mishra in its decision said,’Obeying the constitution is everybody’s duty and responsibility’. The 3 Judge bench comprising Justice A K Sikri and A M Khanwilkar further said that the Constitution of India mandates a federal balance between the State and the Centre, the Centre shall not usurp powers on areas within the dominion of the state.

CJI Deepak Mishra mentioned that Delhi Government does not have the status of a ‘State’. However, the bench clarified that LG can’t act in a mechanical manner.” Lt. Governor is bound by aid and advice of Council of Ministers, subject to the proviso to Article 239 AA to refer the matter to President. He cannot act independently and has to act as per aid and advice of Council of Ministers.” the Bench added.

The Bench further added that “There is no room for absolutism and no room for anarchy.” In a majority of three judges-CJI Dipak Misra, A K Sikri and A M Khanwilkar said,”L-G can’t interfere with every decision of the elected government.” The majority bench also stated that the L-G must work harmoniously work with elected Government, L-G is the administrative head but he can’t act as an obstructionist.

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