While seeking support against the Centre's ordinance control over administrative services in Delhi, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday met his Jharkhand counterpart, Hemant Soren, in Ranchi.
Giving a strong message to the Congress party, Kejriwal said that the party has to decide whether it is with "democracy, constitution, and 140 crore people of the country or with PM Modi".
Notably, Kejriwal had on May 23 embarked on a nationwide tour to seek support from the Opposition parties against the Ordinance.
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) national convenor has so far met West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin former Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo Sharad Pawar, Bihar CM Nitish Kumar and his deputy Tejashwi Yadav.
Addressing the joint press conference with his Jharkhand counterpart Hemant Soren, Kejriwal said, "Last month, a grave injustice was done to the people of Delhi. They were insulted and their democratic rights were snatched. In a landmark judgment on May 11, the Supreme Court ordered that the government elected by the people of Delhi will have the powers. But unfortunately, on May 19, the government circumvented the order by bringing the ordinance. The Modi government said that they won't allow the elected government to function".
"The ordinance will now go to the Parliament. BJP has the majority in Lok Sabha but in Rajya Sabha, it only has 93 out of 238 members. So, if all the non-BJP parties come together, this bill can be defeated," he added.
He further called the ordinance an "attack on the foundation of democracy" and urged all the parties to come together against it.
"This is not just a matter of Delhi, but of the whole country. They (BJP) can bring a similar ordinance for Punjab, Rajasthan, Jharkhand or Tamil Nadu. This is tampering with the Constitution to seize the powers of the elected government and everyone should come up against it. We are going across the country and we have received good cooperation from all parties," he said.
The AAP national convenor added, "I would like to thank Hemant Soren for assuring his support against the ordinance. I would also urge other parties to come against this undemocratic ordinance. This is an attack on the foundation of democracy. The way elected governments are toppled and ordinances are brought, we all have to come together".
Responding to a reporter's question on Congress' stand on the ordinance, Kejriwal said, "Today, the Congress has to decide whether it is with democracy, constitution, 140 croe people of the country or with Modi Ji".
Jharkhand CM Hemant Soren while assuring support to AAP, lashed out at the Centre and called it an "attack" on the 'federal structure' of the country.
"This ordinance is an attack on the federal system of the country as well the idea of Unity in Diversity. The Central government talks about federal structure but acts totally opposite. It is clear today that parties that are not the allies of BJP are facing almost the same situation. It is a matter of concern. The common people also play a huge role in Democracy," Soren said while speaking to reporters.
Soren added, "So, this is not just an attack on the government but also on the people. We will have a deep discussion on the issue within the party as well and will work on how to proceed against this (ordinance) democratically. They (AAP) have raised voice against the ordinance and I hope that they succeed in their movement."
Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann, who was also present during the press conference, slammed the Centre and accused BJP of wanting to "impose" its directions upon the elected governments of the state.
"Our movement is against the attempts of murdering the democracy in the country. We saw how our wrestlers had gone to immerse their medals. If timely voices are not raised, soon the ashes of democracy will have to be immersed," he said.
CM Mann added, "The way ordinances are brought and the Governor imposes their decisions on the state governments. It has become 'Elected vs Selected'. BJP want to impose their 'selected' candidate upon those 'elected' by the people. We all agree that we have to come together to save the democracy".
The Union government on May 19 brought an ordinance to notify rules for the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD) regarding the 'transfer posting, vigilance and other incidental matters'.
The ordinance was brought to amend the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991 and it circumvents the Supreme Court judgement in the Centre vs Delhi case. (ANI)