Refusing to entertain multiple petitions, mainly from Punjab Congress president Partap Singh Bajwa and former Congress parliamentarian Jagmeet Singh Brar, for Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) inquiry into the international drug racket, the Punjab and Haryana high court has made it clear that political battles need to be fought somewhere else.
"You have battles outside court. We are already looking at the issue in a larger perspective and have another case (filed by former director general of police, prisons, Shashi Kant) of narco-terrorism coming up on January 29, where the central government also has to clear its stand on the assistance of Interpol," said chief justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul on Monday, while hearing the petitions from Bajwa and Brar.
Ordering the petitions to be "dismissed as withdrawn", the court granted both petitioners liberty to assist the court in the pending case. "But there would be one PIL (public interest litigation)," it said. The court also directed Punjab advocate general Ashok Aggarwal to file the complete status report on January 29. The union government has orders to cooperate with the Punjab government to tackle the issue.
Taking note of the mudslinging by political parties on the issue, the court said: "A lot of people want to take benefit out of it. But more and more people coming to court on the same issue will not serve any purpose. We are not inclined to entertain the petitions."
Bajwa's counsel NS Boparai argued: "It is Punjab police's own case that they will require Interpol assistance. How can it judge own people. Allow us to put on record some important papers." Countering the allegations against the state by both petitioners, the state advocate general submitted: "Petitioners are taking their political battle inside court and making wild allegations."
Arguing his case, Brar alleged mess-up by powerful politicians across party lines. "I have not come here to make allegations against the (state) government (alone), since my party people are also involved." Brar submitted, referring to the findings about the patronage of senior police officers and ministers to the accused spread across China, Canada and Vietnam.
Replying to this, the court remarked: "Why should we have five-six petitions separately. Assist us in the already pending matter. You will get the benefit of the orders passed."