Govt of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Act 2021 comes into force; ‘Govt of Delhi’ will mean ‘Lieutenant Governor’

The Central Government hereby appoints the 27th day of April, 2021, as the date on which the provisions of the said Act shall come into effect, in exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (2) of section 1 of the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Act, 2021 (15 of 2021), according to the notification.

The Amendment Act modifies the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991 (Act), enhancing the Lieutenant Governor’s powers while restricting the elected government in certain ways.

The Amendment Act was passed by the Parliament in March 2021.

 

The amendment was made to give effect to the “interpretation made by Hon’ble Supreme Court in Government of NCT of Delhi v. Union of India,” according to the Central government.

 

 

 

The Act’s stated purpose is to ensure that the Lieutenant Governor is given the opportunity to exercise the power delegated to him under proviso to clause (4) of Article 239AA of the Constitution in a limited number of circumstances.

 

“The term ‘Government’ referred to in any law to be made by the Legislative Assembly shall mean the Lieutenant Governor,” it is proposed to be added to Section 21.

 

The Bill’s Section 3 aims to expand the Lieutenant Governor’s powers by amending Section 24 of the 1991 Act, which deals with “Assent to bills.”

 

Changes to Section 33 of the 1991 Act are being sought so that the Legislative Assembly or any of its committees can’t make any rules that enable them to consider or conduct inquiries into the day-to-day administration of Delhi. This clause, in particular, is being sought to be retroactive in its application.

 

Section 5 of the bill proposes to introduce a proviso to Section 44 of the 1991 Act (relating to “conduct of business”), requiring the government to request the Lieutenant Governor’s advice on all matters prior to taking any “executive action.”

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