'Our shoulders are broad enough': Supreme Court rejects Centre's bonds argument

The Supreme Court brushed aside the Centre's concerns that its electoral bonds scheme verdict was being 'misused' on social media as an agenda and it was being embarrassed.
'Our shoulders are broad enough': Supreme Court rejects Centre's bonds argument
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The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed the central government's contention that its judgment striking down the electoral bonds scheme was being 'misused' on social media as an agenda. It said it was not concerned with how its verdicts were being interpreted by third parties.

"As judges, we are only on the rule of law and work as per the Constitution. Our court is only to work for the governance of the rule of law in this polity. As judges, we are also discussed on social media, but our shoulders are broad enough to take this. We are only enforcing our directions of judgment," Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud was quoted as saying by Bar and Bench.

During the hearing, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told a five-judge Constitution bench led by CJI Chandrachud that there were social media posts related to data on the disclosure of electoral bonds purchased by political parties.

He asserted that "witch-hunting" had begun over the issue and the Supreme Court was being "embarrassed", Bar and Bench reported.

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'Our shoulders are broad enough': Supreme Court rejects Centre's bonds argument

"The ultimate aim was to curb black money and this court must be aware of how this judgment is being played outside the court. Now, witch-hunting has started at another level and not at the level of the central government. Those before the Court started giving press interviews, deliberately embarrassing the court, and it is not a level playing field," Mehta said.

"There is a barrage of social media posts intended to cause embarrassment, and now it is an open field. Now, statistics can be twisted as people want. Based on the statistics, any kind of posts are being made," he said.

Earlier today, the Supreme Court pulled up the State Bank of India (SBI) over its non-disclosure of all details related to the electoral bonds that allowed individuals and companies to make donations to political parties. It asked the lender to furnish all bond-related details by 5 pm on March 21.

The Supreme Court had earlier pulled up the SBI for not disclosing electoral bond numbers and thereby not fully complying with its previous judgment. The top court categorically stated that electoral bond numbers, which link donors to recipients, "have to be disclosed" by the lender.

Noting that the electoral bond details shared by SBI were incomplete, a five-judge bench issued a notice to the bank to explain the lapse and posted the matter for hearing on March 18.

In its landmark verdict on February 15, the Supreme Court scrapped the Centre's electoral bonds scheme and called it "unconstitutional".

Source: India Today

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