The Union home ministry is looking into the constitutional validity of the Delhi government’s panel to probe alleged irregularities in the city’s cricket association and may declare it “null and void”, sources told Hindustan Times on Monday.
A ministry official said the city government was “not competent” to constitute such an inquiry into the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA), which has been at the epicentre of a political controversy with chief minister Arvind Kejriwal accusing Union finance minister Arun Jaitely of wrongdoing when he headed the sports body for more than a decade.
“The government issued the notification without the approval of the lieutenant-governor (L-G). The view in the ministry is that, like the earlier commission of inquiry instituted by the Delhi government to look into the CNG fitness certificate row, it should also be declared null and void,” he said.
But former solicitor general Gopal Subramanium, who will head the probe, said the panel was formed in line with provisions in the Constitution.
In a letter to chief minister Kejriwal on Sunday, acclaimed lawyer explained that the Aam Aadmi Party government was right in instituting the commission because a resolution to that effect was passed by the Delhi assembly which is a “state legislature for all practical purposes”.
His argument came at a time of heightened deliberation in the home ministry over the constitutional validity of a notification from the Delhi government to form the probe panel, an official said.
The notification for the one-member commission to look into the affairs of the DDCA between January 1, 1992, and November 30, 2015, was issued by the Delhi government’s vigilance department.
Last week, Subramanium told a news channel that he would begin the probe after a gazette notification with the L-G’s sign on it. But his letter to Kejriwal addressed the pre-requisite clause.
“I also learn that both thee minutes of the cabinet meeting as well as proceedings of the legislature have been forwarded to the lieutenant-governor in accordance with the rules of business who must have initiated his perusal of them. This receipt of information both from the cabinet and allowing the legislature to proceed forward clearly indicates that the L-G, prima facie, has consented to the appointment of the commission,” he wrote.