Will Boycott Public Accounts Committee Centenary Celebrations: Delhi Speaker

Through amendments to the GNCTD Act, the Centre has "snatched" away these powers of assembly committees, he said.

Will Boycott Public Accounts Committee Centenary Celebrations: Delhi Speaker

Ram Niwas Goel said chairpersons of Public Accounts Committees have been invited to the event

New Delhi:

Delhi Assembly Speaker Ram Niwas Goel on Friday said they will boycott the centenary celebrations of the Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on December 4 and 5 to protest the "unconstitutional" amendments to the GNCTD Act in March.

Mr Goel said chairpersons of Public Accounts Committees in state assemblies and assembly speakers have been invited to the event, which will be addressed by the prime minister.

"There will be no representation of the Delhi Assembly in the centenary celebrations of Parliament's Lok Lekha Samiti. Neither I nor the Delhi Assembly's Lok Lekha Samiti chairperson Atishi (Marlena) will attend the two-day event," Mr Goel said.

He said he will write to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind on the matter and alleged that the Centre wanted to "impinge" on the powers of Delhi Assembly committees by amending the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD) Act.

"We have registered our objection on this matter through several platforms. We even wrote to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, but to no avail. So now, to oppose these unconstitutional amendments to the Act, we have decided to boycott the centenary celebrations of the Parliament's Lok Lekha Samiti (Public Accounts Committee) on December 4 and 5," Mr Goel said in a press conference.

He said that assembly committees play a crucial role in establishing transparency and keeping a check on the works of the government and its departments.

Through amendments to the GNCTD Act, the Centre has "snatched" away these powers of assembly committees, he said.

Earlier in August, Mr Goel had said the Delhi Assembly would move the Supreme Court to challenge that portion of the GNCTD Act which entails "snatching away" the powers of the assembly committees.

The amended GNCTD Act, passed in Parliament in March, makes it clear that the "government" in Delhi means the "Lieutenant Governor".

The Act makes it mandatory for the Delhi government to take the opinion of the Lieutenant Governor before any executive action.

It also prohibits the Assembly from making any rule to enable itself or its committees to consider matters of day-to-day administration of the National Capital Territory and also from conducing any inquiry pertaining to administrative decisions.

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