Cabinet seeks solicitor general’s views on presidential reference

March 10th, 2012 - 10:34 pm ICT by IANS  

Pratibha Patil New Delhi, March 10 (IANS) The government will take a call on the proposal for a presidential reference on the Supreme Court’s order on 2G licences regarding auction of natural resources after it receives a briefing by the solicitor general.

Well-placed sources said the union cabinet, which met Saturday, deferred a decision on the matter. It sought Solicitor General Rohinton Nariman’s views before taking a final call on the issue.

Through Article 143 of the Indian Constitution, the President can refer matters of public interest to the Supreme Court.

In this particular case, President Pratibha Patil can ask the Supreme Court if its order directing the government to auction spectrum, which is one of the natural resources, will be binding on other natural resources as well.

“The presidential reference, if decided by the cabinet, will not be against the verdict but certain sections arising out of the verdict,” the sources said.

The last time that a presidential referral was sought by the government was in 2004 over the water-sharing dispute between Punjab and Haryana.

The government has filed a petition in the apex court seeking a review of its January order on the appropriateness of the first-come-first-served policy it followed for allotting 2G spectrum in 2008.

The government has also sought relief from the Supreme Court over the four-month deadline for re-auction and said that it would take at least 400 days to complete a fresh auction.

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