Supreme Court rejects PIL on food security regulation

The Supreme Court refused to entertain a PIL challenging the food security regulation declared by the government. The court declined to hear the PIL on the ground that there is political aspect behind it and directed the petitioner to approach the high court.

What was the PIL on food security regulation about?

The petition filed by advocate M L Sharma alleging that the Centre has brought the regulation for political purposes and the court should examine its validity. It stated that Article 123 of the Constitution that deals with the power of the President to declare a regulation during the recess of Parliament has been misused as there was no emergency situation and constitutional provision has been misused for pre-election propaganda and political gains.

President Pranab Mukherjee signed the regulation on food security to give the nation’s two-third population the right to get 5 kgs of food grains every month at highly subsidised rates of Rs 1-3 per kg.

What does Article 123 of the Constitution of India say?

The Article 123 of the Constitution of India empowers the President to promulgate Ordinances during recess of Parliament. It says:

(1) If at any time, except when both Houses of Parliament are in session, the President is satisfied that circumstances exist which render it necessary for him to take immediate action, he may promulgate such Ordinance as the circumstances appear to him to require.

(2) An Ordinance promulgated under this article shall have the same force and effect as an Act of Parliament, but every such Ordinance

(a) shall be laid before both House of Parliament and shall cease to operate at the expiration of six weeks from the reassemble of Parliament, or, if before the expiration of that period resolutions disapproving it are passed by both Houses, upon the passing of the second of those resolutions; and

(b) may be withdrawn at any time by the President Explanation Where the Houses of Parliament are summoned to reassemble on different dates, the period of six weeks shall be reckoned from the later of those dates for the purposes of this clause

(3) If and so far as an Ordinance under this article makes any provision which Parliament would not under this Constitution be competent to enact, it shall be void CHAPTER IV THE UNION JUDICIARY