HC discards petitioner,takes suo motu notice

Discarding an NGO as the original petitioner in a public interest litigation challenging appointment of Sumedh Singh Saini as Director General of Police (DGP),Punjab,the Punjab and Haryana High Court Tuesday decided to “proceed with the issue suo motu”.

Written by Express News Service | Chandigarh | Updated: April 17, 2014 5:48 pm

Discarding an NGO as the original petitioner in a public interest litigation challenging appointment of Sumedh Singh Saini as Director General of Police (DGP),Punjab,the Punjab and Haryana High Court Tuesday decided to “proceed with the issue suo motu”.

For assistance,senior lawyer K N Balgopal has been appointed as amicus curiae. Balgopal will be assisted by a junior counsel,Kuldeep Khandelwal.

Taking cognisance of allegations levelled by the petitioner,Voices for Freedom,a division bench held that the issue is of “substantial public importance”. The bench comprising Chief Justice Arjan Kumar Sikri and Justice R K Jain,however,“discarded” the society as petitioner in the case. This,was done after the Punjab government questioned the credentials of the society.

Punjab law officer,Rupinder Singh Khosla contended that the society is “harbouring ill will and grudge” against Saini. Khosla also pointed out that as per Section 6 of the Societies Registration Act,1860 for a member of the society to file a PIL,a resolution has to be passed by the society. In the present case,Khosla alleged,no such resolution was passed to file the PIL challenging the appointment of Saini. The PIL was filed by the society on behalf of its director,Simranjit Singh. The state had earlier submitted that the petitioner is not an NGO but a “body of radical hardliners attempting to abuse the processes of law to target Saini in a systematic manner”.

Finding force in the argument raised by Punjab,the court ruled that since the PIL was not filed “properly”,the society cannot be allowed to continue as the petitioner. As a result,the Bench took suo motu notice of the allegations levelled by the petitioner.

For adjudication,the court has deferred the case to November 8.

Punjab move to re-employ sacked panchayat secys challenged

Chandigarh: The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Tuesday issued notices asking Punjab government to respond to a PIL demanding quashing of a decision that it (state government) took to re-recruit sacked “tainted” panchayat secretaries. The petitioner,Ludhiana resident Kuldeep Singh Khaira,has alleged that the government has “illegally,arbitrarily and unconstitutionally” re recruited 909 panchayat secretaries who were sacked in 2002 following an inquiry held by then Financial Commissioner P Ram. The inquiry was ordered on the directions of the high court in 2002 after unsuccessful candidates had challenged the selection process.

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