The Bombay High Court has refused to give an urgent hearing to a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking an order to restrain NCP leader Nawab Malik from making comments against the ongoing investigation in the Cordelia Cruise Drug Case.
The PIL filed by Kauser Ali, who claims to be a maulana and a businessman, has sought that Malik be restrained from commenting in any manner on the officers of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) with an intention to demoralise the agency including its Zonal Director, Sameer Wankhede and his family members.
Ashok Saraogi, Ali’s advocate, mentioned the PIL before a division bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice MS Karnik on Wednesday. The judges however refused to grant an urgent hearing saying that the petitioner should either approach the vacation court or wait till the plea comes up for hearing next month.
“In his capacity as a priest, the petitioner is taking steps for rehab of all persons who are addicts of consuming drugs,” reads the PIL.
Coming in support of the NCB, the plea states that investigating agency has been taking steps to prevent consumption of such drugs even as mafias are trading in drugs within the country and internationally.
The plea also points out that various cases are being probed by agencies like the NCB, Central Bureau of Investigation and Enforcement Directorate after the death of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput.
“However, NCB has proved to be the most effective agency under the supervision of the officer named Sameer Wankhede,” states the PIL.
The plea claims that in case Malik had any grievance against Wankhede then he should have adopted appropriate legal proceedings instead of starting a war on social media against the officer and his sister.
Citing Malik’s tweets, the PIL states that “right to speech could not have been used for the purpose of demoralising any person”.
The plea further alleges that the NCP leader is issuing statements only to demoralise Wankhede and his team.
Besides, while the press has the liberty to publish articles pertaining to the court proceedings, it cannot be utilised for demoralising an officer who is working for the interest of the State and society at large, reads the plea.
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