Former Indian cricket team captain Sourav Ganguly suffered a setback as the Supreme Court on Thursday quashed the allotment of “63.04” kathas of land in Kolkata’s prime Salt Lake City by the West Bengal government in 2009.
A bench of justice GS Singhvi and justice AK Ganguly said the state had failed to discharge its constitutional duty by making the allotment in violation of the law that has been explained by the Supreme Court .
Terming the allotment against public interest, the bench further added a government cannot act to benefit an individual.
Justice Ganguly, who wrote the judgment setting aside 2009 order of the Calcutta high court, added a word of praise for the world renowned cricketer. He said he was a Sourav Ganguly fan and was delighted to watch his “glorious cover drives and effortlessly lofted shots over the fence.”
“But as a judge, I have different duties to discharge. Here I must be objective and eschew my likes and dislikes and render justice to a cause which has come from the court,” said justice Ganguly.
It also directed the government to refund the money paid by Ganguly for the land and asked the cricketer to surrender the plot within two weeks.
The judgment came on an appeal filed by an NGO and some other organisations, assailing the allotment of plot to Sourav Ganguly’s trust to set up a school-cum-sports academy in Salt Lake City.
The state government allotted land to the trust after Sourav Ganguly wrote to the then state urban minister in February 2009 requesting him for a bigger plot.