Supreme Court is likely to give its judgement today on petitions challenging government’s decision of November 2016 to ban Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 currency notes. Rs 10 lakh crore wort
h of money was wiped out of circulation overnight because of the move.
Fifty-eight petitions were filed in the apex Court challenging the notes ban, arguing that it was not a considered decision of the government and should be struck down by the court.
The government has argued that the court cannot decide a matter when no tangible relief can be granted. It would be like “putting the clock back” or “unscrambling a scrambled egg”, the centre said.
Five-judge Constitution bench headed by Justice SA Nazeer heard the arguments before its winter break and on December 7, suspended the verdict. The other members of the bench are Justices BR Gavai, BV Nagarathna, AS Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian. Justice BR Gavai and Justice BV Nagarathna have authored two separate judgments, it’s learnt.
The centre said the demonetisation was a “well-considered” decision and part of a larger strategy to combat the menace of fake money, terror financing, black money and tax evasion.
Former Union Minister and senior advocate P Chidambaram argued that the centre has not examined alternate methods to control fake currency or black money.
The government, he said, cannot initiate any proposal on legal tender on its own. This, he said, can only be done on the recommendation of the central board of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).