Calcutta HC dismisses plea seeking removal of Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar

Updated on Feb 18, 2022 05:53 PM IST
During the hearing Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for the Union government had sought that exemplary cost should be imposed on the petitioner to discourage such PILs. The court, however, didn’t impose any cost.
The Calcutta high court on Friday dismissed a Public Interest Litigation filed earlier this month seeking the removal of West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar. (PTI FILE PHOTO.)
The Calcutta high court on Friday dismissed a Public Interest Litigation filed earlier this month seeking the removal of West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar. (PTI FILE PHOTO.)

The Calcutta high court on Friday dismissed a Public Interest Litigation filed earlier this month seeking the removal of West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar.

In the petition the advocate had alleged that the Governor was destroying the spirit of federalism. He also sought that the court should direct the Union government not to use the Governor as a political tool against the Mamata Banerjee-administration.

The division bench of Chief Justice Prakash Shrivastava and Justice Rajarshi Bharadwaj, however, dismissed the PIL while saying that the material placed with the petition did not hold any ground to entertain the petition.

The court said that the petition was filed based upon some tweets, one letter of the Governor and the publications made by one newspaper.

“We are not satisfied that the material placed along with the petition furnishes any ground to entertain the petition or to issue any such direction to the respondent No. 1 (Union government) as prayed in the petition. Hence, the petition is dismissed,” the order said.

The petitioner alleged that the Governor was bypassing the state council of ministers and dictating directly to the officers and was tweeting almost every day. It was further alleged that the Governor being the formal head, is bound by the aid and advice of the council of ministers, and therefore, his observations about the functioning of various ministries under the state government carry deeper political repercussions and they have the potential to affect the federal structure and amount to a misuse of political office.

“It was a moral victory as the court has once again underlined the powers and jurisdictions of the Governor,” Rama Prasad Sarkar, who filed the PIL, told the media.

During the hearing Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for the Union government had sought that exemplary cost should be imposed on the petitioner to discourage such PILs. The court, however, didn’t impose any cost.

“The PIL doesn’t stand in court. It may well be a political debate but doesn’t have any legal ground. Such an issue cannot be solved in the high court. It was bound to be dismissed,” said Sabyasachi Chatterjee, high court advocate.

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