In a jolt to Kejriwal, TDP backs Centre’s Delhi Bill on control of servicestext_fields
New Delhi: In a huge blow to Arvind Kejriwal, Andhra Pradesh's Telugu Desam Party (TDP) has announced its support for the BJP-ruled Centre’s ordinance on control of services in the national Capital, despite being a former opponent.
The TDP parted ways with the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in 2018 and also brought a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government.
However, the party now also has plans to vote in support of the government against the opposition on the motion of no-confidence.
With three MPs in the Lok Sabha and one MP in the Rajya Sabha, the TDP's support will boost the government's tally, which was already set to have the NCT Delhi (Amendment) Bill 2023 cleared by parliament.
Now, both the regional parties of Andhra Pradesh, the ruling YSRCP and the opposition TDP, are now supporting the government.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) suffered a setback in its fight against the Delhi services bill as Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik-led Biju Janata Dal's (BJD) announced support for the bill a day ago.
This assured that the bill will comfortably sail through the halfway mark in parliament.
The BJD, with nine MPs in the Rajya Sabha, will help the government cross the halfway mark in the upper house, where the BJP-led NDA does not have a full majority on its own.
The YSR Congress Party of Jagan Reddy, with nine members in the Rajya Sabha and 22 in the Lok Sabha, has already announced its support to the government on the critical bill.
The halfway mark in the Rajya Sabha is 120, and with support from the BJD, YSRCP, TDP, and Mayawati's BSP, the BJP-led government has 127.
Around 109 MPs, including those from the 26-member opposition alliance INDIA and some Independents, are expected to vote against the bill, which will replace the controversial Delhi services ordinance.
The Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) bill replaces an ordinance for the control of Delhi's bureaucrats, issued by the Centre to bypass a Supreme Court order stating that the elected government in Delhi, and not the Centre, has control over the transfer and appointments of bureaucrats.
The Delhi Services Bill states that the central government is empowered to make rules on matters related to the tenure, salaries, transfers, or posting of officers in Delhi and will also have the power to decide on any action or probe against officers, as quoted by NDTV.
Kejriwal has been visiting different parts of the country to meet chief ministers of Opposition-ruled states and other political leaders, seeking their support against the Centre’s ordinance in Parliament.
CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao, Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Uddhav Thackeray, NCP chief Sharad Pawar, and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee have extended their support to the AAP over the ordinance issue. Bihar Chief Minister and JD(U) leader Nitish Kumar and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin have also supported Kejriwal on the issue.