The Centre on Wednesday ruled out giving control of the city police to the Delhi government for now, saying the responsibility of law and order in the capital should remain with the central government.
"Successive governments have maintained that the responsibility for law and order in the capital city should remain with the central government. That is the practice in most capitals (across the world)," Finance Minister P Chidambaram told reporters after a meeting of the Union Cabinet.
He was replying to questions on comments by Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on the issue of control of the Delhi police, which functions under the Union Home Ministry.
At the same time, he said this was not the time to debate positions. "Let us restore normalcy in Delhi. These issues can be flagged for debate," he said.
Chidambaram said the issue of control over the Delhi police was also debated during his tenure as the Union Home Minister. "I felt that this (current) arrangement is an appropriate arrangement," he said.
Chidambaram said some changes were carried out during his tenure by way of involving the Lieutenant Governor a 'little more' and by consulting the Chief Minister 'more often'.
"But, if further changes are required, we can look into that. This is not the time to debate these matters," the finance minister said.