New Delhi: The crucial hearing on the measures taken by the Centre to ease suffering of and inconvenience to people in rural areas, who are mostly dependent on cooperative banks, post-demonetisation will be taken up by the Supreme Court on December 9.
The apex court could not take up the matter today, as scheduled earlier, since Chief Justice T S Thakur, who had to head the bench, did not hold the court.
The top court had on December 2 asked the Centre to spell out the measures taken to ease suffering of and inconvenience to the people in rural areas.
While hearing a batch of pleas challenging various aspects of demonetisation, the court had said that all the parties should sit together and prepare a list of categories of cases which could be referred to high courts and those that could be heard by the apex court.
Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the Centre, had said that the government was aware of the situation in cooperative banks which lack proper infrastructure and mechanism as compared to scheduled banks.
The submission came after senior advocate P Chidambaram, appearing for cooperative banks, questioned the government’s decision, saying that the rural economy was almost paralysed due to non-inclusion of cooperative banks.
The court was hearing a batch of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the decision to demonetise Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes, besides on the issue of inconvenience faced by the common man due to it.
It had also asked the Attorney General to file an additional affidavit explaining the “schemes and steps” taken to ease the situation that has arisen due to demonetisation.
The Centre has recently moved the apex court seeking transfer of all the petitions pending in various high courts to either the Supreme Court or one of the high courts.
It had on November 24 filed an affidavit in the apex court on demonetisation and had said that the “bold move” would eradicate black money and slush funds operating since Independence which cast a “parallel economy” hitting the poor and the middle class.
On November 29, the apex court had agreed to hear pleas of 14 cooperative banks of Kerala seeking its nod to transact business like banks and others seeking demonetisation of any currency note higher than Rs 100 denomination.