Toughening his stand on “frivolous” PILs, Chief Justice of India TS Thakur slammed various petitions this week. Stating that petitions meant for “making money and publicity” won’t be entertained at all, he said “It is high time, judiciary should teach such petitioners a lesson and a heavy cost should be imposed on them.”
TS Thakur said this while dismissing a PIL demanding that people in India have lost the moral values should be taught it afresh for betterment of society. Earlier this month he had lashed on a petition asking directions for the removal of encroachment on pavements across the country and said, “SC cannot order the establishment of “Ram rajya” and cannot do things it wanted to due to its limited capacity as an institution. “Do you think with our directions, everything will be done? Do you (petitioner) think we will pass an order that there will be no corruption in the country and all corruption will go? Should we pass an order that there will be Ram rajya in the country? It cannot be like this.”
A similar petition faced his wrath when a petitioner sought to change the name of India to Bharat. “We don’t want to interfere. Whatever you call it, India remains India, Bharat remains Bharat,” he said. “PIL is for some poor people. You think we have nothing else to do?”
Thakur’s toughening stance could be seen when he said, “How can you bring these academic issues? (It’s for) people who are affected. We will not entertain petitions from public interest activists who come here for publicity… Unless there is something very serious that affects someone, we will not entertain (it),” while listening to demand that moral value be added as a subject in schools.
His remarks may set an example for the lower courts to follow and a crackdown on such petitioners can be expected in future.