LG “forced” the government to hire a lawyer of its choice, claims Kejriwal

[Photo: Twitter/@ArvindKejriwal]

A day after the Supreme Court ruled that nominees would not be allowed to vote in Delhi’s mayoral elections, Prime Minister Arvind Kejriwal claimed on Saturday that Deputy Governor VK Saxena “forced” the city government to appoint Tushar Mehta to defend his case before the Supreme Court to lead in the matter of the Mayor of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD).

Kejriwal alleged that the Lieutenant Governor committed criminal contempt of court by trying to get his attorney to represent both sides of the case.

Speaking at a press conference here, the Prime Minister said: “AAP’s mayoral candidate Shelly Oberoi has implicated the Delhi government and the LG in the case. The Delhi government, which has the right to choose any lawyer, asked the Minister of Urban Development to appoint Gautam Narayan.”

“But LG directed the Minister of Urban Development on February 9 that the Department of Urban Development process this petition on behalf of the Office of the Lt.

The lieutenant governor tried to “unconstitutionally” sway the case to keep the truth from coming out in court, he added.

“It’s like my attorney is mine, but your attorney is also mine,” Kejriwal said, claiming that the LG wanted Tushar Mehta to defend all his “wrong actions” in court by representing both sides.

In a tweet, Kejriwal said: “Hon’ble LG has attempted to violently prevent the Delhi government from presenting its views to Hon’ble SC. This amounts to an interference in the administration of justice.”

The Prime Minister also wrote a letter to the Deputy Governor on this subject.

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The letter reads: “In the case before Hon’ble SC in the MCD Mayor’s matter, the Government of Delhi and LG had opposing viewpoints on all issues. In the interests of fairness and to allow Hon’ble SC to reach the correct conclusion, it was important that all viewpoints were presented before Hon’ble SC. However, there was an attempt by Hon’ble LG to prevent the Delhi government from presenting their views to Hon’ble SC.”

“The Honorable LG Office issued the following instructions to the UD Secretary on February 9th. The Venerable Lt. Governor has requested that the Department of Urban Development, GNCTD, defend this petition on behalf of Respondent #1, which includes the Office of Lt. Governor, Delhi and enlist the services of Tushar Mehta, Attorney General of India, to defend this petition,” the letter said.

“This means Hon’ble LG wanted to appoint counsel for both itself and the opposing party. The Venerable LG wanted Tushar Mehta to represent both himself and the counterparty i.e. the Government of Delhi,” Kejriwal said in the letter.

Posting the letter on social media, Kejriwal tweeted: “LG has forced Delhi government to appoint Tushar Mehta in MCD mayoral case in SC. So, Tushar Mehta represented both opposing parties – the Delhi government and LG. Isn’t that an interference with the administration of justice? Isn’t that a crime?”