Attorney General K K Venugopal on Wednesday expressed concern over oral observations by the Supreme Court while hearing Public Interest Litigations (PILs), saying that the country had myriad problems and the court’s orders in one might have implications on another.
Venugopal’s comments came on a three-judge bench’s observation during the hearing of a PIL relating to inhuman conditions in 1,382 prisons across the country. Justice Madan B Lokur, who was heading the bench, took a dig at the government for its delay in introducing prison reforms.
The Attorney General (AG) said the court’s judgments sometimes have adverse effects on budgetary allocations.
“There are so many PILs related to social issues pending here (in the court) and, unfortunately, the court hears them individually. Order in one can affect the rights of many,” he said.
The AG said the apex court’s intervention had been beneficial on several counts. He, however, added that there was the possibility that the court, while dealing with a matter, might not consider the impact it would have on some other aspects.
In response, the bench said that “we are trying to solve some of these problems”. It added, “We are also citizens of this country and we know the problems which the country is facing.”
Justice Lokur said the court was not criticising the government for everything. The bench said it was “only enforcing the law” and citizens’ fundamental rights under Article 21.