Delhi being a Union Territory does not enjoy "unlimited powers" and the AAP government should resolve its differences with authorities instead of fighting with them, former chief minister Sheila Dikshit said Thursday.
Ms Dikshit's remark came after a Supreme Court verdict over the division of powers between the centre and the elected city government.
The former Delhi chief minister said the Congress government faced problems over governance issues but it never allowed such things to become a talking point and suggested the ruling AAP to reconcile differences instead of resorting to "fights" with authorities.
"Delhi is a UT and the Constitution specifies its powers. It does not have unlimited powers. The office of the lieutenant governor, the Ministry of Home Affairs and the government of India also look after several things.
"If they (the Delhi government) want to change this situation they should approach them (the Centre) explaining difficulties faced by them. It cannot be rectified through fights," the Delhi Congress president said.
The Constitution has a division of powers between the Delhi government and the Home Ministry through the lieutenant governor (L-G), she said.
"We never faced such problems when in government. We used to give our views to the L-G and the Home Ministry, sometimes they were accepted sometimes not," said the former three- time chief minister of Delhi.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal expressed sadness over Ms Dikshit's remarks, saying she should not make such statements for short-term "political gains".
"I respect Sheila Dikshitji. I appeal to her not to make such comments. We don't even have 10 per cent of the power that her government had.
"Didn't she have the power to transfer officers? Didn't she have ACB (anti-corruption Bureau) under her? Still, in the last four years we have done more work than her government did in 15 years," he said.
Haroon Yusuf, working president of the Congress's Delhi unit, said Mr Kejriwal was "camouflaging" his "failure" to perform despite being in power in Delhi for four years, by showing dissent against the Supreme Court order.
"The Act giving powers to the Delhi government was enacted by parliament. He should go to Parliament if wants any changes in it. But, he is camouflaging all his drawbacks because he has not done anything except publicity and is now trying to cover it up," he said.
The Supreme Court has clearly demarcated the powers of the Lt Governor as to where he has to see a file and take a decision, Mr Yusuf, a former minister in Ms Dikshit's tenure, said.
In a setback to the AAP government in Delhi, a two-judge bench of the Supreme Court on Thursday gave a split verdict on the contentious issue of who should control administrative services but appeared to agree that the Centre has the final word.
In view of the differences, Justices AK Sikri and Ashok Bhushan referred the matter to a larger bench of the top court.
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