FPJ Legal: CM Kejriwal's statement given in press conference 'enforceable', Delhi HC directs Delhi govt to pay rent for poor

A single judge bench comprising of Justice Pratibha M Singh of the Delhi High Court directed the Delhi government to take a decision within six weeks to implement statement made by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal promising to pay rent of tenants who failed to do so owing to their poverty and financial conditions.

The Delhi High Court has held that a promise or assurance given by the Chief Minister in a press conference amounts to an enforceable promise and that a CM is expected to exercise his authority to give effect to such a promise.

The Court ruled that the assurance/promise given by the Chief Minister is enforceable, both on the basis of the doctrines of promissory estoppel and legitimate expectations.

"This court is of the opinion that the promise/assurance/representation given by the CM clearly amounts to an enforceable promise, the implementation of which ought to be considered by the Government. Good governance requires that promises made to citizens, by those who govern, are not broken, without valid and justifiable reasons," the Court held.

The Court was dealing with a petition filed by daily wage labourers/ workers, who were unable to pay their monthly rent, to seek enforcement of a promise made by the Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal dated 29th March last year.

The Court, therefore, ordered the Delhi government to take steps to frame a policy to carry out the assurance given by the CM.

The government of the national capital would, having regard to the statement made by the CM on 29th March, 2020, to landlords and tenants, take a decision as to the implementation of the same within a period of 6 week, the Court said.

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