The Supreme Court has held that courts cannot impose their values on society in the name of promoting public interest while dealing with administrative orders.
“Public interest floats in a vast, deep-ocean of ideas, and ‘magined experiences´. It would seem, to us, wise for the courts not to venture into this unchartered minefield.
“We are not exercising our will. We cannot impose our own values on society. Any such effort would mean to make value judgements,” a Bench of Justices Lokeshwar Singh Panta and B Sudershan Reddy observed.
The Bench passed the observations while setting aside a judgement of the Allahabad High Court which had directed allotment of a certain plot in Meerut to an educational institution -- Association of Management Studies (AMS).
The High Court ordered allotment of the land to AMS on ground that it was carrying out a noble task of imparting education which was in “public interest”.
The direction was passed despite the fact that there were other higher bidders for the plot and that the AMS was willing to pay only Rs 560 per sq yard and not even the reserve price of Rs 690 per sq yard fixed by the Meerut Development Authority (MDA).
Aggrieved by the direction, the MDA and the successful bidder Pawan Kumar filed the SLPs in the apex court challenging the high court’s direction.