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Kejriwal, LG stand-off far from over; disagreement likely to deepen over control of CCTVs

By Vikas

New Delhi, July 7: The promise to install CCTVs across Delhi to improve the law and order situation was one of the main promises of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) before 2015 polls, but what now appears is that custodian of these cameras would be Delhi Police, which is controlled by LG Anil Baijal.

Even after the Supreme Court's verdict delineating the roles of LG and Delhi government, the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP government and the LG office are continuing to bicker over several matters.

CM Arvind Kejriwal and LG Anil Baijal

A committee formed by L-G Anil Baijal has recommended that the Delhi Police will be the custodian of all CCTV cameras in public spaces in the capital, including ones to be installed under AAP government's CCTV project, said an Indian Express report. This is likely to deepen the confrontation between Baijal and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

The rules governing CCTV cameras in Delhi have been drafted by a committee chaired by Principal Secretary (Home) Manoj Parida. AAP has been critical of Parida and the committee. Earlier, PWD Minister Satyendar Jain had asked Parida not to chair the L-G's panel.

Meanwhile, the Lieutenant Governor and the AAP government continued to spar over control of the services department, with Kejriwal blaming the Centre for "advising" the LG not to follow the Supreme Court order and Baijal hitting back at the AAP chief and refusing to let go of the command over transfer and postings of officers.

Kejriwal asserted that it was the first time in the country's history that the central government was openly refusing to obey the apex court's order, and added that the LG's refusal would only lead to "anarchy" in the country.

The chief minister said that it is very "dangerous" that the central government is advising the Lieutenant Governor not to follow the apex court's order.

In a statement, the Home Ministry also denied that it had given advice to the LG to the ignore the Supreme Court order on powers related to Delhi government. It said the suggestion that it has advised the LG to not follow the Supreme Court order was "misleading".

[AAP govt-LG power tussle continues over control of services department]

Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia held a 25-minute meeting with Baijal, the first after his nine-day sit-in, and also sought an appointment with Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to urge him to follow the Supreme Court verdict.

Right after Kejriwal's press briefing, Baijal shot off a letter to the chief minister asserting that the Home Ministry's 2015 notification that 'Services' falls outside purview of the Delhi Assembly continues to be valid. The chief minister hit out at the Centre and the LG, alleging that it was a "conspiracy" to "paralyse" the Aam Aadmi Party government in Delhi.

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