SC stays Tripura HC order seeking scrutiny of security cover of Mukesh Ambani & family

by IANS |

New Delhi, June 29 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Wednesday stayed the Tripura High Court orders seeking to examine the security cover given to Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani and his family, and also issued notice on the Centre's plea against the high court.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, submitted before a bench comprising Justices Surya Kant and J.B. Pardiwala that the high court wants to examine the threat perception and urged the court to stay the orders. After hearing arguments, the bench stayed the high court orders, passed in May and June, in the matter.

The matter is likely to come up for hearing next month.

On June 27, Mehta, while mentioning the matter, submitted: "We pointed out to the high court that the Bombay High Court rejected a similar petition..." He added that security provided to Ambanis has nothing to do with the Tripura government and the high court had no jurisdiction to entertain the PIL. Mehta said the high court has also sought the presence of the official from the Union Home Ministry, with documents related to threat perception, in the matter.

The Centre submitted that the high court passed an order in a PIL filed by an individual person who had no locus standi in the matter and was just a meddlesome interloper, claiming himself to be a social activist and student by profession.

"It is respectfully submitted that in the above thoroughly misconceived, frivolous and motivated PIL petition, where no violation of any fundamental right was even pleaded, the Hon'ble High Court has sought to exercise its judicial review jurisdiction over a decision, which has been taken by trained experts on public order, individual and national security", said the Centre's plea.

The plea added, "Thus, in the respectful submission of the petitioner, the very indulgence of the Hon'ble High Court to judicially review the decision of the Central government to provide security cover to some of the respondents suffers from patent and manifest errors of law and is perverse requiring interference of this court".

The Centre contended that it was further pointed out to the high court that, based on the threat report obtained by the security forces, 'Z+' category security was given to Mukesh Ambani in 2013 and 'Y+' category CRPF cover was given to Respondent Neeta Ambani in 2016. "It was also pointed out to the High Court that both the security covers to Respondents 2 & 3 were given on the basis of inputs and assessment report received from intelligence and investigation units and the expense for giving such security was also duly borne out by the said two Respondents", added the Centre's plea.

In an interim order issued on June 21, the high court had directed the central government to place the original file maintained by MHA regarding threat perception and assessment report in relation to Mukesh Ambani and his family.

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