Initiation of proceedings by a third party under the garb of a PIL is not at all warranted

Delhi High Court: While dismissing the PIL filed by an NGO for the immediate arrest of certain MP’s of  Maharashtra who had forced fed a chapati to a Muslim Catering Supervisor during Ramzan, at the New Maharashtra Sadan, the Court has held that initiation of proceedings by a third party under the garb of public interest litigation is not warranted. It was said that the petitioner relied on the basis of information gathered from Newspaper, T.V. and Social Media, however, no such report or relevant document was placed on record. While holding that the petition was filed without attaching any  relevant materials in support of the averments made therein, the Court clarified that in a PIL, Court has to be satisfied not only about the credentials of the applicant but also the prima facie correctness of information given by him. Public mischief as well as mischievous petitions for oblique motives should be avoided by the Court without encroaching upon the sphere reserved by the Constitution for executive and the legislature.

In the instant case certain Mp’s of Maharashtra had objected to the quality of food being served by  IRCTC at the New Maharashtra Sadan. While demanding immediate discontinuation of the same they entered the kitchen and tried to force feed a chapati to the Catering Supervisor, IRCTC, who was on fast at that time due to Ramzan. No complaint was filed by the victim against the incident.

Dismissing the PIL, Court viewed that two complaints had already been filed about the alleged incident which have been received by the Additional Commissioner of Police and appropriate action is being taken in accordance with law. A statement has also been made by the Home Minister terming it as an unfortunate and regrettable incident and that the Government should make constant efforts for maintaining religious harmony in the country. Since,  the petitioner has miserably failed to furnish any particulars to establish his credentials to maintain the writ petition by way of public interest litigation and steps have already been taken by the concerned authorities/departments, hence, the matter does not deserve Court’s intervention. Maulana Ansar Raza v. Udhav Thackrey, W.P.(C) 4741/2014, decided on 22-08-2014

To read the full judgment, refer SCCOnLine

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