The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court has imposed a fine of Rs 5000 on the office of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The fine has been imposed as the PMO failed to file an affidavit over a public interest litigation (PIL).
The PIL had sought action on the basis of reports of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG).
A bench comprising Justice Sudhir Agrawal and Justice Abdul Moin imposed a fine while hearing the PIL filed by one Sunil Kandu.
According to the PIL, the Centre reportedly took cognisance of just 10 CAG reports while it ignored the rest. Notably, the CAG submits as many as 5000 reports to the government every year.
The PIL also sought reform in the CAG. Apart from it, the PIL further questioned the role of the central government in not taking any action on audit objections raised by the CAG in the past 10 years.
During the hearing of the PIL on January 9, the bench discovered that the instruction to file reply was given to the parties on August 1, 2017 itself. They were given a month's time to file their response.
Arguing on behalf of the government, Additional Solicitor General SB Pandey sought more time from the court to file response on behalf of the PMO and the Law Ministry.
Expressing displeasure at this, the bench though granted one more opportunity to Pandey to file reply, imposed Rs 5,000 cost on the PMO and Law Ministry for their lethargy in responding to the high court's direction. The court has fixed the matter for next hearing after three weeks.
(With PTI Inputs)