The Supreme Court will hear on Wednesday the Centre’s plea seeking transfer of various petitions pending before different high courts and a civil court to it or to the Delhi High Court. All the petitions pending before different HCs and other courts have challenged the government’s November 8 decision to demonetise the R500 and R1,000 notes.
Attorney general Mukul Rohatgi mentioned the transfer petition before a bench led by Chief Justice TS Thakur for an early hearing.
On Friday, the apex court had refused the Centre’s plea to stay proceedings on various petitions pending in various high courts and other trial courts, saying people have a right to approach courts and they cannot be stopped when they have grievances. “It is a serious issue which requires consideration. It indicates that the magnitude of the problem is serious,” it said.
However, it had hinted at transferring all the PILs to the Delhi HC and had suggested the government to move a transfer petition in the SC.
Various similar petitions are pending before the high courts of Gujarat, Kerala, Karnataka and Hyderabad, and the Bombay civil court. While some of the petitions have been dismissed by the courts, there are still some matters pending before different courts, the UoI had said in its plea.
While the apex court is hearing a batch of four PILs against the Centre’s demonetisation move, it had on last Tuesday refused to stay the government’s demonetisation notification, but asked it to spell out the steps taken to minimise public inconvenience.
Two PILs have been filed by Delhi-based lawyers Vivek Narayan Sharma and Sangam Lal Pandey, while two other individuals, S Muthukumar and Adil Alvi, have joined the issue. The PILs have questioned the rationale and modus operandi behind the drive.
The PIL before the Hyderabad HC has alleged that sufficient time frame had not been given for the transition and it would create unprecedented chaos and panic among people. Another PIL before the Gujarat HC seeks to extend the date of validity for exchanging R500 and R1,000 notes and also asks that hospitals be asked to accept the old notes.