SC refuses to entertain plea against PM Cares Fund

The bench, also comprising Justice B.R. Gavai, asked the petitioner to move back to the high court with a review petition. “You go and file a review. Let us have the benefit of the high court order.”
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New Delhi, March 26 : The Supreme Court on Friday refused to entertain a plea challenging the Allahabad High Court order which rejected a challenge to the validity of the PM CARES Fund and the PM National Relief Fund (PMNRF).

Senior advocate Devdatt Kamat, representing petitioner Divy Pal Singh, contended before a bench headed by Justice L. Nageswara Rao that the high court relied upon the verdict of the top court in the case of NGO Centre for Public Interest Litigation and dismissed the petitioner’s plea.

The bench, also comprising Justice B.R. Gavai, asked the petitioner to move back to the high court with a review petition. “You go and file a review. Let us have the benefit of the high court order.”

After a brief hearing in the matter, Kamat said he will withdraw the plea from the apex court and file a review petition in the high court. He added that the plea before the high court had sought disclosure of money received and also challenged the validity of funds.

The plea contended that the PMNRF, a public charitable trust, was created on January 24, 1948 and in 2005, when the Disaster Management Act was enacted, the National Disaster Relief Fund (NDRF) was created. It was contended that after the creation of the NDRF, the PMNRF lost its utility.

It was contended that the Central government on March 28, 2020, created PM CARES Fund, without passing any legislation to that effect and its inspection was also taken out of the purview of the RTI Act, 2005. The plea argued that PM CARES Fund, substituted a statutory fund, the NDRF, which weakened the Disaster Management Act, 2005.

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