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18th Jamadi-us-Saani 1435 | Saturday, Apr 19, 2014
India

Remedy of govt's wrong policy is to disapprove it in election: SC

Monday, 15 July 2013
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New Delhi, July 15:

Remedy against government's unreasonable policy lies with the people who can disapprove it during elections while casting their votes, the Supreme Court observed on Monday while expressing reservation in adjudicating policy decisions.

It said that courts should maintain judicial restraint and should not encroach upon the executive or legislative domain while adjudicating government's policy decisions and should step in only when they are inconsistent with the Constitutional laws.

"If the policy of the Government, in the opinion of the sovereign, is unreasonable, the remedy is to disapprove the same during election. In respect of policy, the Court has very limited jurisdiction," a bench of justices C K Prasad and V Gopala Gowda said.

"We are conscious of the fact that there is wide separation of powers between the different limbs of the State and, therefore, it is expected of this Court to exercise judicial restraint and not encroach upon the executive or legislative domain," the bench said.

The court passed the order on a appeal filed by an NGO Kachchh Jal Sankat Nivaran Samiti, seeking its direction to Gujarat government to release more water from Sardar Sarovar Project to the District of Kutch.

"We are of the opinion that the matters affecting the policy and requiring technical expertise be better left to the decision of those who are entrusted and qualified to address the same. This Court shall step in only when it finds that the policy is inconsistent with the Constitutional laws or arbitrary or irrational," it said.

Refusing to interfere in the issue, the bench said it would amount to encroaching upon executive domain.

"Candidly speaking, we do not have the expertise to lay down policy for distribution of water within the State. It involves collection of various data which is variable and many a times policy formulated will have political overtones.

"It may require a political decision with which the Court has no concern so long it is within the Constitutional limits. Even if we assume that this Court has the expertise, it will not encroach upon the field earmarked for the executive," the bench said.

PTI

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