Death Reference Cases Pending In Supreme Our Priority: Chief Justice

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The Supreme Court bench adjourned the matter for further hearing.

New Delhi:

The Supreme Court Tuesday said there are 65-75 death references pending which needed to be heard on priority basis rather than hearing a plea for some roving inquiry into the nexus between politicians and corporates on the basis of unsubstantiated documents.

A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Sanjay Kishan Kaul questioned an NGO about the authenticity of documents it has been referring to allege nexus between politicians and corporate houses.

"There are 65-75 people languishing in jail. When they wake up in the morning they do not know whether they will be able to see the light of another day. Judicial time is precious and that is our priority. I want my judges to focus on these cases," the bench told advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for NGO Centre for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL).

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Mr Bhushan said that he is aware of the priorities but the case also needs to be heard as it involves the nexus among journalists, politicians and corporate.

"You want us to order roving inquiry into the nexus on the basis of these documents. What is worth of these documents? Someone said to someone you have to meet so and so. Do you want us to go into all this? You should go before the criminal court with your allegations," the bench told Mr Bhushan.

The Chief Justice said, "I am not saying you do not have a cause but how can we do it on the basis of these documents."

The bench asked Mr Bhushan whether he has any idea about the number of constitution bench cases pending before the top court or the number of cases referred to three-judge bench.

In its order, the bench said, "Having heard the counsel for the petitioner we are of the view that the petitioner at this stage ought to be given an opportunity to file better particulars of the allegations that have been made in the PIL to seek the reliefs sought. The petitioner may do so within a period of six weeks from today."

It adjourned the matter for further hearing.

The bench also referred to a PIL in which cost was imposed on a petitioner for seeking lowering of marriageable age for men from 21 to 18 years, as for women saying such kind of petitions wastes precious judicial time.

The bench was hearing a PIL filed by NGO seeking SIT probe into allegations of nexus among politicians, bureaucrats, journalists and a prominent corporate house.

The NGO claimed that it confidential documents to show officials of a corporate house had meet several politicians, bureaucrats and journalists every day to further their business objective.

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