SC refuses to stay government's demonetisation notification

Updated: Nov 16, 2016, 11:03 IST | Agencies |

Says fighting blackmoney menace was a ‘laudable step,’ seeks to know measures taken to minimise public inconvenience

BJYM workers wearing masks of PM Narendra Modi serve tea to people lined up outside banks and ATMs to get their old currency exchanged in Bhopal. The government will introduce a system in which customers exchanging defunct currency notes will be marked with indelible ink. Pics/PTI
BJYM workers wearing masks of PM Narendra Modi serve tea to people lined up outside banks and ATMs to get their old currency exchanged in Bhopal. The government will introduce a system in which customers exchanging defunct currency notes will be marked with indelible ink. Pics/PTI

New Delhi: The Narendra Modi government yesterday surpassed a major legal hurdle after the Supreme Court refused to stay its notification demonetising Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes but told it to reduce the inconvenience of the people.

The PM’s mother Heeraben Modi shows the new note she got after exchanging old Rs 500 notes
The PM’s mother Heeraben Modi shows the new note she got after exchanging old Rs 500 notes

“You (Centre) can have a surgical strike against blackmoney but you cannot have surgical strike against the people of the country," a bench comprising Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justice D Y Chandrachud said. “Carpenters, maids, vegetable sellers are dependent on cash. Are you capable of reducing their trauma? Your aim is to wipe out blackmoney but people are traumatised standing in queues for hours doing nothing,” the bench said.

“They (Centre) call it surgical strike. You (Kapil Sibal appearing for a petitioner) call it carpet bombing. The object of such measures is against the people hoarding cash,” it said.

Observing that fighting the blackmoney menace was a “laudable” step, it asked the Centre to “consider taking steps to ease the pain of the common people”.

Oppn unites
The government yesterday braced itself for a stormy Winter Session of Parliament beginning today with the opposition presenting a united face in seeking to corner it over the demonetisation issue.

Prime Minister Modi met opposition leaders and sought their cooperation. “We have launched a crusade against corruption, black money and fake currency, which is also behind cross-border terrorism. All parties should come together on this issue of national interest," he said.

But an unrelenting opposition decided to step up its fight against the government. Arch rivals TMC and Left parties, SP and BSP, got together at a meeting convened by Congress to formulate a joint strategy. There were some reservations over TMC’s proposal for a march to Rashtrapati Bhawan today to petition the President against demonetisation. They will meet again today to finalise their strategy on the issue.

Akhilesh says ‘black money helped’
Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav yesterday said economists were of the opinion that black money helped Indian economy in times of global recession. “I am very clear on this...black money should not be generated. Economic experts say the magnitude of the global economic crisis at times is not felt in India because of strong (parallel) economy of black money,” he said. "I am opposed to black money. I do not want it," he said.

Kejriwal demands SC-monitored probe
New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal yesterday demanded a Supreme Court-monitored probe into the demonetisation scheme, terming it as a “fraud” aimed at benefiting a "particular political party", a veiled reference to BJP. He also accused PM Narendra Modi of receiving bribes while he was the Gujarat CM and sought a judicial probe into the issue. Kejriwal also accused Modi of helping big corporates and said the PM had waived off R1.14 lakh cr dues of corporates but was threatening people who deposit more than Rs 2.5 lakh in banks.

‘Modi govt has turned people into beggars’
Kolkata: Accusing the Modi government of turning the people of the country into beggars by the demonetisation move, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee yesterday said she would meet President Pranab Mukherjee today on the issue irrespective of whether other parties join her or not.

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