Orissa High Court quashes PIL on Rs 2K currency note withdrawal
Advocate BK Ragada argued on behalf of the petitioner.
CUTTACK: A vacation bench of Orissa High Court on Tuesday refused to entertain a PIL challenging a notification of Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on May 19 announcing the withdrawal of Rs 2,000 currency notes from circulation.
The bench of Justice SK Sahoo and Justice MS Raman said, “We are of the view the present writ petition is a publicity interest litigation in the garb of public interest and thus we are not inclined to entertain the same. Accordingly, the writ petition being devoid of merits, stands dismissed.”
Cuttack-based social activist Jayanti Das had filed the petition seeking direction for necessary changes in the exchange policy of Rs 2,000 bank notes as it had certain loopholes. Advocate BK Ragada argued on behalf of the petitioner.
The vacation bench dismissed the petition after going through the averments taken in the writ petition filed by Das, hearing petitioner counsel Ragada as well as deputy solicitor general of the Union of India PK Parhi after going through the decisions of the Supreme Court regarding the scope of interference in the economic policy decision of the government
The bench said, “Law is well settled. Public interest litigation is a weapon that has to be used with great care and circumspection and the judiciary has to be extremely careful to see that behind the beautiful veil of public interest, a publicity-seeking is not lurking. It is to be used as an effective weapon in the armoury of law for delivering social justice to the citizens.”
The bench cited the Delhi High Court’s May 29 judgement on lawyer Ashwini Upadhyay’s plea challenging RBI’s permission for exchanging Rs 2,000 currency notes without any identity proof following the withdrawal of the highest-value currency notes from circulation. In the cited portion, the Delhi High Court said, “This decision of the government is purely a policy decision and courts should not sit as an appellate authority over the decision taken by the government.”