HC disposes of PIL alleging ex-Sheriff still enjoyed benefits
Mumbai: Accepting the statement of former Sheriff Indu Shahani stating she would cease to be the Sheriff of Mumbai, the Bombay High Court on Tuesday disposed of a PIL which alleged that Shahani still continued to enjoy the privileges.
A PIL, filed by Haresh Lokegaonkar, had alleged that Shahani, also Principal of H R College of Commerce, whose term as Sheriff of Mumbai expired in 2009, has been holding on and enjoying all the privileges entitled to the post, even till date as no other person has been nominated for this position.
Justice S F Vajifdar and R Y Ganoo disposed of the PIL on March 15 after Shahani`s Counsel Satish Maneshinde said she ceased to be Sheriff of Mumbai with effect from December 19, 2009.
He stated that thereafter Shahani had not discharged any functions as the Sheriff of Mumbai and that she would not in any matter whatsoever hold herself out to be the Sheriff.
The petition alleged that Shahani was operating her private website called "sheriffofmumbai.Com." The name of the public post and Government seal (Rajmudra) is found on her website. The use of government seal on website without any authority of law is an offence, it claimed.
Maneshinde said the website inadvertently remained to be deleted immediately upon her ceasing to be the Sheriff of Mumbai. It has now been deleted, he told the court.
The lawyer further said that if there was any other material which indicated that Shahani continues to be the Sheriff of Mumbai, the petitioner may inform her and assured that the latter would take steps to remedy the situation.
The petitioner contended that the post of Sheriff was an apolitical titular position of authority bestowed on a good citizen of Mumbai for a period of one year. The Sheriff is appointed by a committee headed by the Chief Minister.
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