SC fines ED 1 lakh for contesting bail of man suffering from cancer | India News


NEW DELHI: In order to deter reflexive filing of appeals, the Supreme Court has imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh on the Enforcement Directorate for filing a petition seeking cancellation of bail of a PMLA case accused suffering from cancer and other ailments, reports Dhananjay Mahapatra.
Passing first such order against any probe agency, a bench of Justices MR Shah and MM Sundresh criticised ED for appealing a year-old Allahabad HC order granting bail to Kamal Ahsan, an ex-Axis Bank official accused of siphoning out over Rs 22 crore and who was booked under PMLA by ED.
“In the peculiar facts and circumstances of the case and taking into consideration the fact that the respondent (Ahsan) is suffering from malignancy and cancer and thereafter when he has been released on bail, the same is not required to be interfered by this court. The special leave petition stands dismissed,” the SC said. Not stopping at dismissal of the appeal, the bench imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh on the department and ordered that the fine amount be recovered from the salary of the officer who had given the final nod for filing of the appeal.
SC has consistently frowned upon mechanical filing of appeals by agencies and other departments of the government.
“The department ought not to have filed such an SLP wasting the stationery, legal fees and the court’s time. The SLP stands dismissed with exemplary cost, to be borne by the officer concerned, who granted permission to file the SLP, quantified at Rs 1 lakh, to be recovered from the salary of such an officer. The cost is to be deposited by the department with the Registry of this court within a period of four weeks from today,” the bench ordered.
The SC said on the department depositing the fine amount, Rs 50,000 be transferred to National Legal Services Authority (NALSA), New Delhi and Rs 50,000 to the SC’s Mediation and Conciliation Project Committee. As per recent data, approximately 46% of the total pending cases in courts pertain to the government. This includes cases relating to PSUs and other autonomous bodies.


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