The Centre’s Narendra Modi government on Wednesday opposed a petition seeking a probe into the Rs 11,400 crore PNB scam and deportation of Nirav Modi, the alleged mastermind of the financial fraud.
Addressing the bench consisting of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud, Attorney-General KK Venugopal said, “I appear for the government. We are opposing the petition. This is a case in which the FIRs have been registered and investigation has started.”
CJI Misra, according to a report by The Hindu, asked why the government was opposing this PIL. “But we will not be saying anything for now,” CJI Misra was quoted as saying. However, Bar and Bench website reported that the Supreme Court bench appeared satisfied with the AG’s contention that an investigation was already in progress in the said case.
The petition was moved by advocate Vineet Dhanda, who argued that while a person who takes a minimal loan amount is hounded, people of big stature easily run away with thousands of crores of rupees. To which, the Supreme Court bench reacted sharply reacted saying that the top court was not entitled to address big speeches.
Justice Chandrachud observed that the way the petitioner was putting forth his submissions proved that the petition was only filed to gain publicity. Addressing Dhanda, Justive Chandrachud said, “Do not ask questions to the Chief Justice… now it establishes that this is a publicity oriented litigation.”
“Your Lordship is insulting me… I have practised law for 16 years and I do not need publicity. I am here because of this issue… then let me withdraw my petition and let the SC suo motu take this issue up,” Dhanda said as per the report by The Hindu.
CJI Misra said that the court wanted to hear the government’s objection to the PIL and posted the case for hearing on 16 March.