THE Supreme Court on Monday refused to entertain a plea seeking the court’s intervention to declare the crisis in Uttarakhand’s subsidence-hit Joshimath a national disaster, saying, since the State High Court is seized of a “broad range of issues” it should hear it as a matter of principle.
As the lawyer for the petitioner submitted that people in Joshimath are dying, the top court told him curtly, “You don’t want to use these proceedings for sound bytes in social media.”
A bench of Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud and Justices P S Narasimha and J B Pardiwala asked petitioner Swami Avimukteshwaranand Saraswati to approach the Uttarakhand High Court with his petition.
“As a matter of principle, we should allow the High Court to deal with this. High Court is seized of a broad range of issues, we’ll give you liberty to approach the High Court.
“The specific aspects which have been highlighted in these proceedings can be addressed before the High Court for suitable redressal. We accordingly permit petitioners either to institute a substantive petition before the High Court so that it can be taken together with pending proceedings or intervene in the pending matter. The High Court is requested to consider the grievance,” the bench said.