Sahara, Birla papers: SC says don’t see smallest material to back charge

Prashant Bhushan relied upon some purported email communications of officers to allege that bribes were paid to the then Gujarat CM and others.

Written by Utkarsh Anand | New Delhi | Published:December 15, 2016 4:49 am
kashmir, kashmir unrest, kashmir pellet firing, pellet guns, burhan wani killing, burhan wani protest, supreme court, sc pellet, indian express news, india news The bench said it does not want to keep the matter pending and asked Bhushan to adduce reliable materials by December 16. (File Photo)

The Supreme Court Wednesday cautioned an NGO against making unsubstantiated allegations against constitutional functionaries, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and observed that it would not order an inquiry on the basis of Income Tax papers relating to raids at Aditya Birla Group and Sahara companies unless there was credible material to suggest illegal payoffs to politicians.

“This is becoming very abnormal for us. What we told you (petitioner)… give us smallest material. We will deal with it… How will a constitutional authority function if you are going to make such allegations? We don’t see even the smallest material to substantiate your accusations,” a bench of Justices J S Khehar and Arun Mishra told advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for NGO Common Cause.

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Bhushan, however, relied upon some purported email communications of officers of Aditya Birla and Sahara groups to allege that bribes were paid to the then Gujarat Chief Minister and others.

But the bench told him: “You are only making aspersions… and aspersions create false perception. How will constitutional functionaries work if such aspersions are cast without any material? We will certainly act but there has to be some material first.”

The bench said it does not want to keep the matter pending and asked Bhushan to adduce reliable materials by December 16. Bhushan, on his part, complained about not getting sufficient time for placing on record the relevant documents.

“No. It is not unreasonable as you are dealing with very high functionaries. You bring very firm and very clear material. You bring it, we have no difficulty,” the court said, adding it has a settled proposition that a petition must have some material.

When Bhushan questioned the hurriedness with which the court wants to deal with the matter, the bench told him that it is very difficult for a person to function against whom aspersions are made. The court also recalled that on November 25, it had asked for credible material before the petition could be admitted.

On November 25, the bench had maintained that ordering an investigation based merely on unverified entries made in a diary or on a computer would have “far-reaching” consequences since “unscrupulous people” could bring the entire world, and even the Prime Minister, under a cloud by simply recording entries of payoffs.

The court had said that documents adduced by NGO ‘Common Cause’ were neither authentic nor credible enough for an inquiry to be launched into the veracity of the entries on payments allegedly made to various politicians.

Demanding a court-monitored probe by a special investigation team, the NGO had alleged a “cover-up” following raids conducted by the Income Tax Department against Aditya Birla Group companies in October 2013 and on the Sahara India Group in November 2014.

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  1. B
    Baiju
    Dec 15, 2016 at 8:34 am
    And your mummy is sleeping with Modi
    Reply
    1. B
      Baiju
      Dec 15, 2016 at 8:33 am
      your mummy is sleeping with modi?
      Reply
      1. C
        chanakya
        Dec 15, 2016 at 5:13 am
        innuendo without material evidence.
        Reply
        1. S
          sushil Ahuja
          Dec 15, 2016 at 6:14 am
          क्या मोदी रिश्वत लेताlt;br/gt;fbid=690936434399773andid=507055882787830
          Reply
          1. S
            sushil Ahuja
            Dec 15, 2016 at 6:15 am
            क्या मोदी रिश्वत लेताlt;br/gt;fbid=690936434399773andid=507055882787830
            Reply
            1. H
              harun
              Dec 15, 2016 at 1:11 am
              Bhushan must know that he must provide evidence of the Money trail into accounts linked with the man he is accusing.lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;The Judges need some material facts
              Reply
              1. S
                stranger
                Dec 15, 2016 at 3:06 am
                what sort strange practice this is. first file case then find evidence of guilt. these people needs to be severely punished for such mockery of judicial process. think if swamy had done the same against sonia and co , if he showed slightest hesitation after on court about the evidence to produce what the media and our so called intellectuals would have done against him.
                Reply
                1. S
                  Sankaran Krishnan
                  Dec 15, 2016 at 3:11 am
                  Why not make them accountable for the false allegation or if they failed to show evidences to the court to move on further and if not why not impose heavy fines on them for dragging the case and filed the case just for publicity which will make the Advocates to think twice before filing of such cases !!!
                  Reply
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