The Delhi Government’s appeal against the National Green Tribunal’s (NGT) appointment of the Lt. Governor (LG) as the head of a Solid Waste Monitoring Committee was presented before the Supreme Court.
A Division Bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Sudhanshu Dhulia heard the appeal. Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, representing the Delhi government, summarized the contested order. Justice Kaul noted that the LG’s role had been minimized post a Supreme Court judgment.
Singhvi clarified that the LG’s role in Delhi is limited in specific matters, referencing the 2018 judgment (State (NCT of Delhi) v. Union of India).
Singhvi referred to the 2023 Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Act and the 2023 Constitutional Bench judgment (Government of NCT of Delhi v. Union of India, 2023) to underscore that the Delhi government’s authority extends to administrative services, excluding public order, police, and land.
He emphasized that the Act does not pertain to “solid waste management.” Justice Kaul stressed the importance of hearing both sides due to the newly passed law’s implications. The Bench scheduled the matter for September 25th.
In the impugned order dated 16.02.2023, NGT appointed the LG as head of the Solid Waste Monitoring Committee to oversee waste management in Delhi. The Committee includes members from various departments. NGT’s decision aimed at addressing long-standing waste management challenges. The Delhi government’s appeal argues that LG’s appointment violates the Constitution, as local governance matters fall within the state government’s domain. The appeal asserts that NGT’s decision infringes on federal principles governing Delhi’s governance, undermining the Delhi government’s power to allocate finances.
Case title: Government of NCT of Delhi v. Union of India, 2023