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No case small, personal liberty precious right: Supreme Court

UP man jailed for 18 years for power theft

No case small, personal liberty precious right: Supreme Court

Two days after Law Minister Kiren Rijiju said the Supreme Court should not be hearing bail applications and frivolous PILs when pendency of cases was so high, a Bench led by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud on Friday said, “No case is small for the Supreme Court.” - File photo



Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 16

Two days after Law Minister Kiren Rijiju said the Supreme Court should not be hearing bail applications and frivolous PILs when pendency of cases was so high, a Bench led by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud on Friday said, “No case is small for the Supreme Court.”

Constitutional duty

If we do not act in matters of personal liberty and grant relief, then what are we doing here? -- SC Bench

“If we do not act in matters of personal liberty and grant relief, then what are we doing here? The Supreme Court exists to hear the cry of such petitioners. We burn the midnight oil for such cases,” said the Bench, which also included Justice PS Narasimha.

Calling it an “absolutely shocking case”, the Bench allowed an appeal filed by Iqram of Uttar Pradesh convicted of electricity theft and awarded nine consecutive sentences running into 18 years. He had already served three years in jail. The Allahabad HC should have set it right, it noted. “All said and done, you can’t elevate the theft of electricity to murder,” the CJI said, ordering the sentences in the nine cases against the appellant would run concurrently, and not consecutively. Terming personal liberty as a “precious and inalienable right”, the Bench asserted that by attending to grievances against its violation, the Supreme Court performed its plain constitutional duty, obligation and function — no more and no less.

Rijiju had on Thursday said, “If the SC starts hearing bail applications and frivolous PILs, definitely it will cause lots of extra burden on the court itself because the Supreme Court by and large is treated as a constitutional court.”

The CJI said, “When you sit here, no case is too small for the Supreme Court and no case is too big… Because we are here to answer the call of conscience, and the cry for liberty of citizens. That is why we are here. These are not one-off cases. When you sit here and burn the midnight oil, you realise everyday there is one case or another like that.”

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#Justice DY Chandrachud #kiren rijiju #supreme court


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