Not James Bond movie with sequels: HC deprecates repeated pleas for Kejriwal's removal as CM

Not James Bond movie with sequels: HC deprecates repeated pleas for Kejriwal's removal as CM

PTI | New Delhi | Updated: 10-04-2024 22:37 IST | Created: 10-04-2024 22:37 IST
Not James Bond movie with sequels: HC deprecates repeated pleas for Kejriwal's removal as CM
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The Delhi High Court on Wednesday expressed its displeasure over repeated petitions seeking removal of Arvind Kejriwal as the chief minister after his arrest despite the previous pleas having been dismissed, saying unlike the James Bond movies there cannot be sequels to such legal prayers.

The court said once it has dealt with the issue and opined that it fell in the executive's domain, there should not be any ''repeat litigation''.

A bench headed by Acting Chief Justice Manmohan pulled up petitioner Sandeep Kumar, a former AAP MLA, who sought Kerjiwal's ouster from the office, for trying to drag the court into a ''political thicket'' and imposed costs of Rs 50,000 on him.

''This is not like a James Bond movie where we will have sequels. (Lt) Governor will take a call on this. You are trying to involve us in a political thicket, that's all,'' remarked the court during the hearing.

The bench, also comprising Justice Manmeet P S Arora, orally reaffirmed that it cannot impose the governor's rule in the capital.

In the order, the court said the plea filed by the petitioner despite being aware of dismissal of earlier PILs seeking identical relief was indicative of his intention to gain publicity. Calling the petition ''misconceived'', the court ordered, ''The present writ petition is dismissed with costs of Rs.50,000/- to be deposited with Delhi High Court Staff Welfare Fund within four weeks''.

The court, in the course of the hearing, observed that the petitioner was ''making a mockery of the system''.

On March 28, the court had dismissed a PIL seeking Kejriwal's removal, saying while the petitioner had failed to show any legal bar that prohibited the arrested chief minister from holding office, there was also no scope for judicial interference in such cases as it was for the other organs of the State to look into the issue.

It also said it cannot declare a breakdown of the constitutional machinery in the national capital. The Indian Constitution provides for imposition of President's Rule in such circumstances.

Again, on April 4, the court had refused to entertain a second PIL on the issue and said it was Kejriwal's personal choice to continue as the chief minister and granted liberty to the petitioner to approach the lieutenant governor (LG).

On Wednesday, Kumar's counsel argued that his case required interpretation of the Constitution and that on account of his arrest in a money laundering case Kejriwal was now not qualified to hold the office of the chief minister.

Justice Manmohan said if there was a grievance, an appeal should have been filed against the earlier decisions instead of a third petition on the same issue.

As the petitioner's lawyer continued to argue and question where he must go if the government was not functioning according to the Constitution, the court told him not to make political speeches.

''Please don't give a political speech here. Go to a corner of the street and do it over there. Please don't do that. Your client may be a politician and he may like to get involved in politics but we are not involved in politics. We stay out of politics,'' said Justice Manmohan sternly.

''You are making a mockery of the system. Don't reduce us to a joke. It is only because of people like you, your client, that we are reduced to a joke. We are imposing some heavy costs on you. Please don't come back with repeat litigation,'' added the judge.

The court said the petitioner was ''persisting'' in spite of the remarks made by a single judge while dealing with his petition earlier this week and said imposition of costs was the only way to ''take care'' of the petitions that are coming up on a ''daily basis''.

''This is enough. Look at the court. The court is packed with litigants. Have some courtesy,'' the court said, reproaching the former AAP MLA.

Kumar's petition was listed before the acting chief justice's bench after it was transferred to it from Justice Subramonium Prasad's court.

While dealing with the petition on April 8, Justice Prasad had said it was filed for ''publicity'' and ''heavy costs'' should be imposed on the petitioner for it.

In his petition, Kumar had said after Kejriwal's arrest by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with a money laundering case linked to the now-scrapped excise policy for Delhi, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) convener incurred an ''incapacity'' to carry out the chief minister's functions under the Constitution.

Kejriwal was arrested by the ED on March 21, hours after the high court refused to grant him protection from coercive action by the federal anti-money laundering agency. He is currently in judicial custody in Tihar jail.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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