Kuljeet Singh Chahal, a Bharatiya Janata Party leader and member of the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), proposed a resolution on Wednesday to expel Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal from the council and declare his seat empty in accordance with the law. Chahal explained that the resolution was necessary since he had missed four months of council meetings. On the other side, the expulsion of three Delhi Government employees who were appointed to Arvind Kejriwal’s office was mandated by Delhi’s Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena due to allegations of corruption.
Unnamed meeting attendees were cited in reports as indicating that the chairman had chosen to put Chahal’s resolution on the agenda for the following meeting for discussion and voting. CM Arvind Kejriwal attended the meeting on Wednesday. Chahal had provided a duplicate.
Chahal referenced Section 8(2) of the NDMC Act, 1994, which states that if a member misses three consecutive council sessions without the council’s authorization, the council may request to the central government that the member’s seat be declared vacant. CM Kejriwal represents the New Delhi constituency as an MLA and an ex-officio member of the NDMC. Any council member who cannot make it to the meeting must request authorization from the board in advance. But from December 2021 to March 2022, Kejriwal allegedly refused permission and missed meetings for a continuous four months.
According to Chahal’s citation in the resolutions, “the council may suggest to the central government that the seat… may be declared vacant with the recommendation to initiate further appropriate steps accordingly,” citing Section 8 of the NDMC Act.
“I have also requested a recommendation from the law department, and they have also given a report confirming it is legal to declare a seat empty,” Chahal said in a statement. The voting will therefore occur at the following meeting, after which the central government will be urged to make a final decision. No one is above the law, he continue.
According to a report by the law department, if a member fails to show up for meetings for the required period of time without getting authorization from the council, the council has the authority to request to the Central Government that the seat be declared vacant.
Notably, the council had previously heard about a situation like this. After the problem was brought up by an NDMC member, CM had attended two meetings.
Three Delhi Government employees who were working in CM Kejriwal’s office were suspended on June 22 by Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena due to allegations of corruption. CMO Deputy Secretary Prakash Chandra Thakur, SDM Vasant Vihar Harshit Jain, and SDM Vivek Vihar are the three officers who have been suspended.
According to sources, these officers were terminated due to allegations of corruption including the sale of public property to private companies. Two assistant engineers of the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) were also suspended just two days prior to the suspension of these three officers. After it was discovered that the apartments created for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) in Kalkaji Extension had structural flaws, action was taken against the engineers.
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