In a significant development, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal met his Bihar counterpart, Nitish Kumar, at his residence in Delhi on Sunday. The meeting aimed to discuss the ongoing tussle between the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Delhi and the central government regarding control over administrative services. The meeting took place just days after the Centre promulgated an ordinance to establish a National Capital Civil Service Authority.
During the meeting, Nitish Kumar expressed his “complete support” to Arvind Kejriwal and the people of Delhi in their fight against the central government’s interference in administrative matters. Kumar, a seasoned politician and a prominent figure in Bihar politics, emphasized his disagreement with the BJP-led government’s ordinance and the injustices it inflicted upon the elected government.
Kejriwal acknowledged Kumar’s support and stated that Nitish Ji would join forces with the Opposition to combat the Centre’s actions. This alliance of regional leaders signifies a unified front against what they perceive as an assault on the autonomy and authority of elected governments.
The ordinance in question was introduced by the Centre shortly after the Supreme Court’s verdict, which granted control over services, excluding police, public order, and land, to the elected Delhi government. The ordinance aims to transfer the powers to transfer and initiate disciplinary proceedings against IAS and DANICS cadre officers to the National Capital Civil Service Authority.
Senior government officials have revealed that the ordinance will be supplemented by additional notifications, orders, or circulars expected to be issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs in the coming week. This move has further escalated tensions between the Delhi government and the central government, as it is seen as an attempt to undermine the Supreme Court’s verdict.
In addition to Nitish Kumar, Arvind Kejriwal has planned meetings with other influential regional leaders, including Mamata Banerjee, the Chief Minister of West Bengal, and Uddhav Thackeray of the Shiv Sena and Sharad Pawar of the NCP. These meetings are aimed at garnering broader support and strengthening the collective voice of regional parties against what they perceive as encroachments on the powers of elected governments.
As the battle over administrative control intensifies, the meeting between Arvind Kejriwal and Nitish Kumar highlights the growing solidarity among regional leaders who are determined to protect the autonomy and authority of their respective elected governments. It remains to be seen how this united front of regional parties will influence the course of the ongoing tussle with the central government over administrative services in Delhi.