SCBA denies authorizing President Adish Aggarwala to intervene in electoral bonds verdict

The Supreme Court Bar Association denies authorizing SCBA President Adish Aggarwala to write to the President of India regarding the Electoral Bonds verdict.

Edited By Alka Jain
Updated13 Mar 2024
Supreme Court Bar Association refutes President's authority on Electoral Bonds letter. (HT)
Supreme Court Bar Association refutes President’s authority on Electoral Bonds letter. (HT)

The Supreme Court Bar Association on Tuesday clarified that it has not authorized SCBA President Adish Aggarwala to write to the President of India, Draupadi Murmu, to not enforce the electoral bonds verdict. 

The association called it an ‘attempt to undermine the authority of the Supreme Court’ and ‘unequivocally condemn the same’. This came after the SCBA to President Droupadi Murmu on Tuesday as the State Bank of India geared up to release electoral bond data. 

SCBA chief Adish C Aggarwala urged the top official to seek presidential reference of the apex court judgment as divulging details could make corporates vulnerable to victimization. The assertion was echoed by the All India Bar Association — also headed by Aggarwala — in a separate missive to the President.

“Disclosing such sensitive information, that too retrospectively, will result in chilling effect in corporate donations and participation in the democratic process…The possibility of them being singled out by those parties that had received less contribution from them, and harassed cannot be ruled out if the names of corporates and their quantum of contributions to various parties are revealed. This will be reneging on the promise given to them while accepting their voluntary contributions," the SCBA chief said.

The two organizations urged Murmu to seek presidential reference in the electoral bonds case so the entire proceedings could be reheard. According to Article 143 of the Indian Constitution, the President has the power to consult the Supreme Court if a question of law or fact has arises.

The State Bank of India submitted the details of entities which had purchased the now-scrapped electoral bonds and political parties which received them to the Election Commission on Tuesday evening. The development came in response to a Supreme Court order that called for SBI to disclose the details by close of business hours on March 12.

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