Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Major Setback for Opposition: SC upholds validity of decision to demonetize notes of Rs 500, Rs 1,000


New Delhi: In a major backlash to the opposition, the Supreme Court on Monday upheld the government’s 2016 decision to demonetize the currency notes of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 denominations.

A five-judge Constitution bench of the apex court, headed by Justice S A Nazeer, said the Centre’s decision-making process could not have been flawed as there was consultation between the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and the Union government.

The court said the notification dated November 8, 2016, which announced the decision to scrap the high-value currency notes, cannot be said to be unreasonable and struck down on the ground of the decision-making process.

The apex court said it is not relevant whether the objective behind the decision was achieved or not.

Addressing reporters here, former Union Minister and senior BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said demonetization played an important role in breaking the backbone of terrorism. He said, ‘This decision was taken in the interest of the country.’ Prasad said that it also cleaned up the economy. He said, “A very important decision of the Supreme Court has come today.

The court has rejected all the petitions challenging the legality of the historic decision of the Modi government in 2016 to demonetize 500 and 1,000 currency notes., to prevent counterfeit notes and money laundering, etc. This historic decision has been upheld by the court today, whereas Congress had created a lot of hue and cry about it.

A five-judge constitution bench headed by Justice Nazeer said economic matters require restraint and the court cannot judicially review the government’s decision. Besides Justice Nazeer, the bench comprised Justice Gavai, Justice Nagaratna, Justice Bopanna and Justice V. Ramasubramanian are also included. But Justice Nagaratna said that notes in the Rs 500 and Rs 1000 series could have been canceled only through legislation and not through notification.

Prasad slammed former Finance Minister P Chidambaram, for underlining Justice Nagaratna’s remarks and alleged that the Congress leader was ignoring the majority decision and making derogatory statements. The BJP leader said India has become a global leader in digital payments, which got a boost after demonetization, and the country witnessed over 730 crore digital transactions worth over Rs 12 lakh crore in October this year alone. Prasad said that the dissenting judge also said that the policy was made with good intentions.

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