Breaking News SC refuses to reduce the Rs 5 lakh cost...

SC refuses to reduce the Rs 5 lakh cost imposed on the petitioner for challenging the appointment of CJI Dipak Misra

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New Delhi Jul 30(ILNS): The Supreme Court today dismissed an application, which sought reduction of the cost of Rs five lakh on the petitioner challenging the appointment of Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra.

In 2017, late Swami Om Ji and Mukesh Jain, national chairman of Dharma Rakshak Shri Dara Sena, had filed a petition in the apex court, challenging the recommendation made by the then Chief Justice of India JS Kehar to appoint Justice Dipak Misra as next CJI.

The Supreme Court had in August 2017 dismissed the petition, slapping the petitioners with costs of Rs 10 lakh. Later in 2019, the costs were reduced to Rs five lakh on a plea filed by the petitioners. Swami Om ji passed away in February this year.

A Division Bench comprising Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice MR Shah heard an application filed by Mukesh Jain on June 4, 2021, seeking a reduction of costs of Rs five lakh.

On Friday, Advocate Dr. AP Singh, appearing for Mukesh Jain, submitted that Mr. Jain is in judicial custody at Balasore jail of Odisha in a case related to WhatsApp messages posted against the Chief Justice of India over the refusal of the Court to grant permission for Rath Yatra at Puri Jagannath Temple.

Dr. Singh argued that he has difficulty meeting Mr. Jain in person since he will have to travel to Odisha to seek instructions.

ASG Bhati contended that the application pertains to the cost. “Although this is between the Court and the parties, your lordship should keep into mind the averments in the plea.”

The bench noted that even in the application seeking reduction of costs, the applicant has made unfounded allegations against the Judges of the Supreme Court, terming the application as “misconceived”.“The language that he has used in a letter dated June 4, 2021 amounts to contempt,” noted Justice Shah.“Mr. Singh, your client will have to pay the cost, the more we indulge with this man, the more he will write these sort of letters,” said Justice Chandrachud.

The bench directed that the award of costs should be recovered from the petitioner as arrears of land revenue by the competent authority. Till the cost is not paid, Mr. Jain is not allowed to file any PIL and the present order should be placed on record along with any other PIL to be filed by him in the future, ordered the Court./ILNS/SS/SV/SNG

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