Sidhu on Kapil Sharma show: He should not continue, but can we restrain him, asks HC
Punjab and Haryana high court on Friday in principle agreed that cricketer-turned-politician and Punjab cabinet minister Navjot Singh Sidhu should not continue with the ‘The Kapil Sharma Show’, but asked whether there are any provisions in the law to restrain him.punjab Updated: Apr 08, 2017 22:01 IST
The Punjab and Haryana high court on Friday agreed that cricketer-turned-politician and Punjab local bodies minister Navjot Singh Sidhu should not continue with the “The Kapil Sharma Show”, but asked whether there are any provisions in the law to restrain him.
The high court bench of justice SS Saron and justice Darshan Singh also said even if there was no violation of law, property demanded that he leaves the show.
The oral observations were made by the division bench during the hearing of public interest litigation (PIL) filed by lawyer activist HC Arora who sought directions to the Punjab government to restrain Sidhu from acting in the comedy show.
“Everything is not to be looked at legally. It’s not that everything has to be a codified law. Something should be tested on the convention and propriety,” the HC bench observed, asking Punjab’s advocate general Atul Nanda and the petitioner lawyer to assist the court on the issue. Nanda had claimed that there was no violation of law if Sidhu continued with the TV show.
Nanda, who was present during the hearing even before court’s formal notice to the state, said he would contest the petition but at the same time refused to be drawn on the issue of propriety stating that he would address “legal issues” only.
The high court bench began the hearing asking the petitioner as to why he was after Sidhu. “What law is violated? Why are you after him? Somebody is earning his livelihood,” the bench asked Arora.
It also asked whether the rules that a government servant can’t do private business would apply in the case of Sidhu, him being on a constitutional post.
“Principally, we agree that he should not take part… but can we restrain him... you have to show us that there is violation of law,” the bench observed. It also said it should be looked from another angle as well as Sidhu is not involved in an “immoral activity” and earning his livelihood.
Earlier, Arora had argued that propriety of the constitutional post of a cabinet minister requires that he should not participate in the comedy show. He also argued Sidhu’s conduct would give rise to “conflict of interest” also as he was bound to enforce the provisions according to which the government employee cannot engage himself into private trade or business.
Sidhu took oath as a cabinet minister on March 16 and soon after courted controversy by announcing that he would continue with the show. Later, chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh sought a legal opinion which was submitted on March 25. There was no conflict of interest between Sidhu’s office as a minister and his working for television shows. There was no violation of the constitution, the Representation of People Act, 1951, or the Code of Conduct in this case, Nanda, the state’s AG, had told the CM.
First Published: Apr 07, 2017 16:24 IST