‘Will go green’, SC on Centre-Delhi dispute on control over administrative services

The Supreme Court on Wednesday said it will go green, while fixing the schedule to begin hearing on the legal dispute between the Delhi government and the Centre in connection with control over administrative services in the capital.

A five-judge bench headed by Justice D.Y. Chandrachud that the court will go green and no papers will be used while conducting the proceedings. The bench told the lawyers, “We will keep this a completely green bench so there would be no papers. Please don’t carry papers.”

Justice Chandrachud added that the secretary general and the IT cell would help senior lawyers to use technology. Lawyers’, involved in the matter, submitted that a bench headed by Chief Justice U.U. Lalit will begin hearing September 13, onwards petitions challenging the Centre’s decision for 10 per cent reservation to economically weaker sections (EWS) in admissions and jobs through the 103rd Constitutional Amendment Act, 2019.

The bench — also comprising Justices M.R. Shah, Krishna Murari, Hima Kohli and P.S. Narasimha — was informed that some senior advocates involved in the Centre-Delhi legal dispute would have to make submissions in the EWS case as well.

The top court said it will list the matter on September 27, for directions looking at the schedule of hearing of the EWS case and indicated that it would tentatively begin hearing on the matter by mid-October.

Justice Chandrachud directed the registry to scan all the written submissions, including books, and case laws. The bench asked the Delhi government and Centre’s counsel to prepare their compilation and submit them to the court master for scanning.

On August 22, the Chief Justice of India, N.V. Ramana (retired) had said a bench led by Justice D.Y. Chandrachud has been constituted to hear the matter pertaining to the legal dispute between the Delhi government and the Centre in connection with control over the administrative services in the capital.

On May 6, the Supreme Court referred to a constitution bench the power tussle between the Centre and the Delhi government.

Then, the top court had clarified that the issue is only related to services, and it will be adjudicated by the constitution bench.

In 2018, a constitution bench had ruled that police, land and public order are the domain of the Centre, and the rest is under the Delhi government.

The Centre had moved an application seeking to refer the matter to a constitution bench for a holistic interpretation of Article 239AA of the Constitution.

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