The Lok Sabha in New Delhi witnessed a heated exchange of arguments and counterpoints as the government's bill on control of services in Delhi was passed.
Following the bill's passage in the Lok Sabha, opposition MPs staged a walkout in protest. The law seeks to overturn a Supreme Court ruling on the rule of bureaucrats in the nation's capital.
Home Minister Amit Shah defended the bill by citing a Supreme Court judgement that stated Parliament has the ability to legislate on topics pertaining to the National Capital Territory of Delhi.
He emphasised that the Constitution allows the central government to create laws for Delhi. The Government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Bill, 2023, is the bill in dispute.
However, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal strongly opposed the law, accusing it of "enslaving" the people of Delhi on Twitter.
He argued that the administration had no valid arguments to support the measure and accused them of attempting to render the people powerless.
Kejriwal's tweet was in response to Amit Shah's statement in parliament, in which he said that disagreements between the BJP, Congress, and the Centre were manageable until 2015 when a government came to office with the goal of fighting rather than serving.
The ongoing conflict between the AAP-led Delhi government and the central government is around the control of Group-A personnel in the administration of the National Capital Territory (NCT).
In May, the centre approved an order that overturned a Supreme Court decision that gave the Delhi government authority of "services" under the NCT administration. The latest bill is a follow-up measure that replaces the previous ordinance.
The measure has now cleared the Lok Sabha and will move on to the following levels of parliamentary approval. The conflict over administrative control between the central government and the Delhi government remains a difficult matter, with both parties vigorously stating their positions.
The final conclusion and its implications for Delhi's government will be widely monitored and contested in the political sphere.