The central government is set to table the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Bill, 2023, also known as Delhi Services Bill, tomorrow (August 7) in Rajya Sabha for its passage. A day before that, political leaders across the party line fired away a war of words laying out their defences in favour as well as in opposition of the Bill.
Contrary to INDIA coalition’s stance to support its member Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) to oppose the Bill, Congress leader Sandeep Dikshit believes ‘opposing this Bill will be wrong’. He further said that his party has only came forward to oppose the Bill, however, it never said that the Arvind Kejriwal-government in Delhi is being run smoothly.
“This Bill doesn’t change the structure of Delhi that much…the Congress’ opposition to this Bill shouldn’t be misunderstood as a support to AAP or its governments,” he said.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) justified the introduction of the Bill and said that the control over services in the national capital was not with chief ministers ‘even 20 years back’.
“The powers of a state and UT are different…He wants to show the public that he was unable to do work because he has no rights…Which is false. Union Home Minister Amit Shah explained all this in the Lok Sabha,” BJP MP Parvesh Sahib Singh told news agency ANI.
AAP minister Gopal Rai alleged that the Centre is trying to ‘forcefully take the rights of Delhi’ with this Bill. “All the opposition parties will together protest against this bill tomorrow…anything can happen in Rajya Sabha tomorrow,” he said.
Meanwhile, both Congress and AAP have issued whips to their respective MPs and asked them to be present in the Upper House on Monday to register their opposition against the Bill.
On August 3, the Bill was passed in the Lok Sabha via a voice vote amid walkout by the opposition.
“Today India is witnessing the dual face of opposition. For them, the bills for public welfare are not important. To ensure a small party does not leave their alliance, they have joined forces,” Union home minister Amit Shah wrote in a post on X (formerly Twitter).