Bombay High Court rejects PIL against Uddhav Thackeray in DA case

The Bombay High court on Tuesday dismissed a public interest litigation seeking a disproportionate assets case against former Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and his family, observing that it sought a “roving enquiry”.

The High Court also imposed a cost of ₹ 25,000 on the petitioners holding that the PIL was bereft of any evidence and that it was nothing but an abuse of the process of law.

The PIL, filed by city resident Gauri Bhide who claims to be a behaviour and soft skill consultant and Abhay Bhide, sought the court’s direction to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED) to conduct a “thorough and impartial” investigation against the ex-CM and his family.

Rejecting the petition, a division bench of justices Dheeraj Thakur and Valmiki Menezes said it provided no evidence that would give a basis to the court to conclude that prima facie a case was made out for an investigation by the CBI or any other central agency.

“On a reading of the complaint and the petition, it appears that the petitioners are only speculating on the sudden rise in the prosperity index of the private respondents (Thackerays) from their humble beginning. Therefore, entertain a suspicion that the lifestyle maintained by the said private respondents could only be attributed to the corrupt practices in the BMC,” the bench said.

It noted that in any case “there is absolutely no evidence or live link between the alleged malpractices” in the BMC and the Thackerays.