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Supreme Court rejects PIL against funding to separatists

The Supreme Court rejected on Wednesday a petition that sought direction to stop alleged funding of separatist organisations in Jammu and Kashmir by the central and state governments.

india Updated: Sep 14, 2016 20:17 IST
Bhadra Sinha
Bhadra Sinha
Hindustan Times
Kashmir separatists,Govt funding,Supreme Court
The Supreme Court said the courts must refrain from entering the executive domain and that the judiciary must protect constitutionally permissible values. (Arvind Yadav/HT File Photo)

The Supreme Court junked on Wednesday a public interest petition that sought to stop central funds and security provided to separatist leaders in Jammu and Kashmir, saying such demands cannot be entertained by judiciary because they are within the exclusive domain of the executive.

“A government is responsible to maintain unity of this country and can take whatever decisions it wants to take in the nation’s interest,” a bench of Justice Dipak Misra and Justice UU Lalit told the petitioner, advocate ML Sharma, and snubbed him for insisting the court to use the word “separatist” in its order.

“No, we will not use this word. It’s your perception,” the bench told him.

“We are of the considered opinion that the grant of funds to the state of Jammu and Kashmir for the purpose of security or otherwise is within the exclusive domain of the central government. In a matter like this, we are of the considered opinion that a public interest litigation does not deserve to be entertained and, therefore, we are not inclined to interfere. It is not a judicially manageable proceeding and the court should refrain from entering the said arena,” the bench ordered.

Sharma said the funds being given to the alleged separatists was not cleared by Parliament, which was in breach of the Constitution. But the SC rejected his submission.

“Government may in its wisdom grant security to someone who has threat. Possible that citizen may not be to the liking of the other. Funding of a state is a nationally sensitive issues for they belong to arena of security of the nation,” the bench said.

The PIL filed on September 8 said more than Rs 100 crore is spent -- for foreign travel, security and other expenses -- on separatists by the government. The separatists, it alleged, misused the money for anti-India activities.

“They are terrorists. Their funding should be stopped,” said Sharma in a passionate plea, only to get chastised.

“Please don’t call anybody by that name, unless the person is convicted. Judiciary cannot examine what funds are given to who,” said the bench.

First Published: Sep 14, 2016 14:39 IST