SC declines early hearing of Sheila Dikshit’s ad campaign spend


New Delhi : The Supreme Court Friday declined to hold an early hearing of a PIL seeking to restrain the Delhi government from continuing with its advertisement campaign focusing on Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and her administration’s achievements.

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As advocate M.L. Sharma, who filed the public interest litigation (PIL), told the court that the Delhi government was spending huge amounts of public money for its ad campaign, the apex court bench of Justice Gyan Sudha Misra and Justice Madan B. Lokur said the matter was not one which should be taken up during the vacation, and the same could come in due course.

Pressing for an early hearing, Sharma told the court that the Delhi government had already spent on the ad campaign through radio, TV, newspapers and other mediums, and intended to spend another Rs.100 crore in the run-up to the elections for the state assembly, slated later this year.

He also told the court that Delhi Lokayuta Justice Manmohan Sarin has submitted a report to President Pranab Mukherjee, adversely commenting on the money spent on the ad campaign.

Questioning the locus standi of the petitioner-advocate, Justice Misra asked Sharma where he got all the figures, and said that the matter could be taken up even in July or August. Justice Lokur said that Rs.100 crore cannot be spent in one month’s time.