The Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a Public Interest Litigation petition seeking the recall of Gujarat Governor Kamla Beniwal and imposed exemplary costs of Rs. 1 lakh on the petitioner for wasting the court's time. The petition was rejected at the admission stage.

A Bench of Justices H.L. Dattu and Anil R. Dave initially warned the petitioner Ashok Pande, an advocate, that it would dismiss the petition — which it said was misconceived and misleading. However, Mr. Pande continued with these arguments even as Justice Dattu made it clear that the PIL was a frivolous petition and insisted that the matter should be referred to a Constitution Bench in view of its importance. The Bench then dismissed the petition and imposed Rs. 1 lakh costs and directed him to deposit the amount with the Gujarat Legal Services Authority within a week, failing which a recovery process would be initiated.

Mr. Pande continued with these submissions and tendered an apology. The Bench refused to accept the apology, pointing out that it had warned at the outset about the imposition of costs if he continued with the submissions. Mr. Pande was whisked away from the court when he persisted with the arguments even after the order was passed.

The petitioner had sought removal of the Governor after Chief Minister Narendra Modi wrote a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to recall her for having appointed Justice R.A. Mehta as Lokayukta without his consent. He contended that the Governor's appointment was illegal because Mr. Modi's consent was not taken prior to her decision.

  • Petitioner persisted with arguments even after order

  • Governor's decision, sans Modi's consent, illegal