Bombay HC asks Centre to respond on PM Cares Fund plea | India News – Times of India

MUMBAI: The Bombay high court on Tuesday sought the Centre’s response to a public interest litigation (PIL), seeking direction to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to forthwith take steps to remove the word “Prime Minister” and his picture from the PM Cares Fund website and its trust deed. It has also sought removal of the national emblem and flag from it.
A bench of Justices Amjad Sayed and SG Dige heard the PIL filed by Vikrant Chavan, Thane district Congress president. Modi is made a party respondent as he is chairman of the fund and settler of the deed.
Chavan’s petition states that Modi on March 27, 2020, executed a deed of trust constituting the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund, which is purported to be a public charitable trust. However the use of the name Prime Minister, his pictorial representation, the national emblem and national flag name violates provisions of The Emblems and Names (Prevention of Improper Use) Act, 1950, and The State Emblem of India Act (Prohibition of Improper Use), 2007, and rules under them.
The PIL states that Modi who is regarded as a repository of the Constitutional trust is expected to preserve the sanctity of the names, emblems and pictorial representations. However they were used to appeal for donations on digital and traditional media in the entire country.
Chavan’s petition also states that the Fund does not discharge any regal, governmental or sovereign functions and is “not the offspring or the blood and bones or the voice and hands of the Government of India.” “ In fact it has been an admitted position that it is not Government of India fund and the amount collected by it does not go to the Consolidated Fund of India,’’ it said, adding that up to March 31, 2020, over Rs 3,076 crore was collected.
Chavan’s advocates Suhas Oak and Sagar Joshi argued that a clause in the trust deed states that the fund is not created by or under the Constitution or by any law of Parliament or any state legislature. Also, that it is not under the control of either the central or state government.
Additional solicitor general Anil Singh sought time to take instructions, following which the judges posted the matter for next hearing on October 26.

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