Says, there is no material to prove that he had dishonoured the national flag

The Madras High Court Bench here on Tuesday dismissed a public interest litigation (PIL) petition filed by a lawyer challenging the nomination of cricketer Sachin Tendulkar as a member of the Rajya Sabha.

The petitioner had accused the cricketer of having dishonoured the national flag by cutting a cake containing the imprint of the tricolour in Jamaica in 2011.

A Division Bench of Justices R. Sudhakar and V.M. Velumani held that it did not find any reason to issue a writ of quo warranto directing the Deputy Chairman as well as the Secretary General of the Rajya Sabha to show cause on what authority they accepted the nomination of Mr. Tendulkar.

The judges said the petitioner had not submitted authenticated materials to substantiate his accusations.

Writing the judgment, Mr. Justice Sudhakar pointed out that the petitioner had accused Mr. Tendulkar of having committed an offence punishable under the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act 1971 and the Emblems and Names (Prevention of Improper Use) Act 1950. He had also claimed that a criminal case in this regard was pending before a Judicial Magistrate at Melur near here.

However, to substantiate his allegations, all that the petitioner could produce before the court were some photographs and newspaper reports. Stating that it could not be discerned from the photographs whether the cake actually contained the national flag, the judge said that it was trite law that courts should not decide cases on the basis of newspaper reports either.

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