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Opposition Hails Justice Nagarathna’s Dissenting Judgment on Demonetisation


Edited By: Nayanika Sengupta

Last Updated: January 02, 2023, 14:44 IST

The Centre had on November 8, 2016 announced the demonetisation of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 denomination currency notes, introducing instead new Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 notes. (Reuters/File)

The Centre had on November 8, 2016 announced the demonetisation of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 denomination currency notes, introducing instead new Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 notes. (Reuters/File)

The ’minority’ judgement pointed out the ’illegality’ and the ’irregularities’ in the demonetisation, Chidambaram said on Monday soon after the apex court made its verdict

After top court’s big verdict on Centre’s 2016 note ban move, former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram on Monday said the majority verdict by the Supreme Court has steered clear of the question whether the objectives of the demonetisation exercise were achieved at all.

The ’minority’ judgement pointed out the ’illegality’ and the ’irregularities’ in the demonetisation, Chidambaram said on Monday soon after the apex court made its verdict with a 4:1 judgment.

”Once the Hon’ble Supreme Court has declared the law, we are obliged to accept it. However, it is necessary to point out that the majority has not upheld the wisdom of the decision; nor has the majority concluded that the stated objectives were achieved,” the senior Congress leader said in a tweet.

ALSO READ: In Big Win for Centre, Supreme Court Upholds Demonetisation With 4:1 Judgment

”In fact the majority has steered clear of the question whether the objectives were achieved at all,” he said.

”We are happy that the minority judgement has pointed out the illegality and the irregularities in the demonetisation. It may be only a slap on the wrist of the government, but a welcome slap on the wrist,” he added.

The dissenting judgement would rank among the famous dissents recorded in the history of the court, Chidambaram pointed out.

Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court upheld the government’s 2016 decision to demonetise the currency notes of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 denomination saying the decision making process was not flawed. A five-judge constitution bench was hearing the matter. While four judges backed the demonetisation move, one judge — Justice BV Nagarathna — dissented, making it a 4:1 verdict.

ALSO READ: ‘Demonetisation Notification Was Unlawful’: 10 Points from Justice Nagrathna’s Dissenting Judgment

Justice Nagarathna differed from the majority judgment on the point of the Centre’s powers under section 26(2) of the RBI Act. Justice Nagarathna said the demonetisation policy was flawed only on legal grounds. She, however, added that the move was well thought of to battle counterfeiting black money and terror funding.

BJP’s Shehzad Poonawalla responded to Chidambaram and said in a tweet, “With SC upholding demonetisation with a 4:1 majority – SC has given its approval not only for objectives of DeMo (to fight corruption) but also on the authority & procedure. But despite DeMo getting both public & court mandate Corrupt Congress continues to cry foul”.

“If a move was in interest of the nation & against corruption – Congress is bound to oppose it. Even the dissenting judge they are quoting has lauded the noble intentions of DeMo but Congress will continue to be the patron of corruption!,” the BJP leader added.

Shiv Sena leader Priyanka Chaturvedi, too, reacted to the Supreme Court verdict and praised Justice Nagarathna’s dissenting order. “Much respect for Justice BV Nagarathna, for standing up & speaking out #Demonetisation,” she tweeted.

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