Delhi Assembly to find successor to Atishi, Saurabh Bhardwaj in its committees

New Delhi: With the induction of MLAs Saurabh Bhardwaj and Atishi into CM Arvind Kejriwal’s Council of Ministers, the Delhi Assembly will have to find their successors in its various committees.

Speaker Ram Niwas Goyal said that a minister cannot be a member of any financial, house and department related committees of the Delhi Assembly.

“We will start the process of finding the successors of Saurabh Bharadwaj and Atishi in various committees,” Goyal said.

According to officials, the Delhi Assembly has three finance, 23 house and seven department-related committees comprising members from both the ruling party and the opposition. While Atishi was part of eight such committees, Bhardwaj represented six. Bhardwaj was also the vice-chairman of the Delhi Jal Board.

“It is the Speaker’s prerogative to appoint chairpersons and members in these committees. The speaker ensures that all sections of the society get representation in these committees through their legislators,” said an official on condition of anonymity.

Atishi was the chairperson of the Public Accounts Committee and the Standing Committee on Education, she was a member of the Standing Committee on Questions and References, Women and Child Welfare, Ethics, Welfare of Minorities, MCD and Health.

Bhardwaj was the chairman of the Committee of Privileges and the MCD while a member in the committees on government assurances, petitions, salaries and other allowances of legislators, and peace and harmony.

Sources said the Speaker could either appoint an existing member as chairman of a committee headed by one of the two new ministers or induct a new MLA and appoint him as the chairman. .

The Delhi Jal Board will also get a new vice-chairman in less than a year. The post was earlier held by Raghav Chadha, who resigned as MLA from Rajendra Nagar before being nominated to the Rajya Sabha from Punjab.