‘West Bengal’s suit on CBI probe despite withdrawal of general consent maintainable,’ says Supreme Court

The Supreme Court deemed West Bengal's suit against the CBI maintainable, allowing the case to proceed. The matter is scheduled for a hearing on August 13 for framing of issues.

Livemint
First Published10 Jul 2024, 11:35 AM IST
Supreme Court of India. (PTI Photo)
Supreme Court of India. (PTI Photo)(HT_PRINT)

The Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that the suit filed by the West Bengal government against the CBI is maintainable. The state government had alleged that despite its withdrawal of general consent on November 16, 2018, the CBI continued to investigate various cases.

As reported by PTI, a bench comprising Justices B R Gavai and Sandeep Mehta stated that the suit will proceed according to the law, allowing it to be adjudicated on its own merits.

It fixed the matter for hearing on August 13 for framing of issues.

The apex court had on May 8 reserved its verdict on the maintainability of the suit filed by the state.

During the proceedings, senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing West Bengal, contended that after the state withdrew its consent on November 16, 2018, the Centre had no authority to permit the CBI to conduct investigations within the state.

In response, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, argued that the Union government or its departments do not exert supervisory control over the investigations carried out by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). This exchange reflects the legal dispute over the CBI's jurisdictional authority in states that have withdrawn their general consent for its operations.

The Centre had raised preliminary objections about the maintainability of the lawsuit filed by the West Bengal government, contending that there was no cause of action against the Union of India.

The West Bengal government has initiated an original suit in the Supreme Court under Article 131 of the Constitution against the Centre. The suit alleges that despite the state's withdrawal of general consent for the CBI to investigate cases within its territorial jurisdiction, the agency has continued to file FIRs and conduct investigations, PTI reported.

Article 131 grants the Supreme Court original jurisdiction to adjudicate disputes between the Centre and one or more states, making it the appropriate venue for resolving this legal challenge.

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First Published:10 Jul 2024, 11:35 AM IST
HomeNewsIndia‘West Bengal’s suit on CBI probe despite withdrawal of general consent maintainable,’ says Supreme Court

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