Statehood demand finds many backers in Delhi assembly

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Feb 25, 2015 00:09 IST

The issue of full statehood for the Capital has become an important issue for the newly-elected AAP government with almost all party MLAs, who got the chance to speak on the second day of assembly, supporting the demand.

Discussing lieutenant governor Najeeb Jung’s speech, transport minister Gopal Rai said that everyone agreed on giving full statehood to Delhi.

“I remember VK Malohtra, leader of Opposition in 2008, talking about this issue in the assembly. Every party wants it so we will request the central government to grant full statehood to Delhi,” he said.

One of the main reasons behind pushing for statehood is bringing the Delhi Police under the state government.

“If there is a rape in Delhi, we cannot do anything as police are not answerable to the state government. This is not the issue of a political party but this issue concerns women’s security. Police have been harassing e-rickshaw drivers and even registered FIR against our MLAs, which is politically motivated. Commissioner of police should be summoned to the House,” Rai added.

Rai talked about bringing the Delhi Development Authority under the government as they needed land for development. Deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia said they want the system to be answerable to government.

Even Speaker Ram Niwas Goel supported the demand saying women in every family have faced chain snatching and police must be held accountable for the same.

Kapil Mishra, Alka Lamba, Sanjeev Jha, Somnath Bharti and Madan Lal also cited rising crime figures and suggested that control of Delhi Police should be given to the state government.

They urged the three BJP MLAs to support them on the issue as the central government is ruled by the BJP.

Vijender Gupta’s argument with speaker

BJP MLA from Rohini and their leader of the legislative assembly, Vijender Gupta accused Goel of being partial. During the day when Goel asked Gupta not to speak loudly, he refused to tone down and said he will continue to raise his voice.

Gupta alleged Kejriwal had called the VAT commissioner and pressurised them to collect `30,000 crore. Goel asked the assembly secretary to remove it from the proceedings of the House to which Gupta raised an objection.

Now BJP has sought time from Jung to discuss the issues.

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