The Bombay High Court on Tuesday stated the Union authorities was inside its powers to droop the MPLAD scheme and divert such funds to fight COVID-19.
A bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice GS Kulkarni was presiding over a public curiosity litigation filed via lawyer Shekhar Jagtap opposing the suspension of the scheme, which supplies parliamentarians funds for improvement work of their constituencies, in April this 12 months for 2 years.
The bench additionally stated it doubted Mr Jagtap had the “locus standi” (a proper to put a declare) within the matter.
It stated if any of the parliamentarians felt they had been unable to hold out improvement work of their constituencies on account of suspension of MPLAD scheme, they had been free to come back to this courtroom.
“The MPs are responsible, mature persons. They will never come before us for such a thing. During a pandemic, the nation requires to put all efforts into strengthening its health and medical infrastructure,” the bench stated.
The excessive courtroom additionally stated Mr Jagtap ought to have performed some analysis and offered knowledge to point out if the suspension of the scheme was adversely impacting the general public.
Mr Jagtap had objected to the Union authorities resorting to Disaster Management Act to droop the Member of Parliament Local Area Development (MPLAD) scheme in April this 12 months.
The excessive courtroom, nonetheless, stated, “This (COVID-19) is a disaster so the government will have to resort to Disaster Management Act. It is within its powers to invoke the Act.”
“Everyone, including all parliamentarians are doing so much to combat COVID. When the entire nation is struggling, how can you object to suspension of MPLAD funds and diversion of this money to combat COVID?” the excessive courtroom stated.
“This money is being used to fight the pandemic and not to build bridges or something that is not required right now,” it stated.
High Court directed Mr Jagtap to submit his written submissions within the matter by Wednesday.
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