The Rajasthan High Court has recently disposed of a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) alleging that works under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) have not been done as claimed by the authorities and various bills have been raised and public fund has been siphoned.
The PIL has been filed by Sawai Singh Sodha and Rewant Singh. After going through the petition, the Division Bench of Justice Manindra Mohan Shrivastava and Justice Madan Gopal Vyas find that though there are allegations made in the petition, there is no prima facie material along with the petition to sustain the allegations of the petitioners.
In the reply filed by the respondents, it is submitted that subsequent to filing of the petition, an enquiry on the complaints as made in the petition was carried out but complaints were found to be frivolous, baseless and politically motivated. A copy of the order of the Divisional Commissioner, Jodhpur dated 08.03.2019 is placed on record along with the reply. The said order stated that the enquiry was made after filing of the petition.
The main grievance in the petition was that despite complaints being made, no enquiry is being conducted. Therefore, as far as that part is concerned, the Court noted that some enquiry has been made and order has been passed.
Shyam Paliwal, the counsel for the petitioners, prayed that he may be permitted to place on record various materials to sustain his allegations by way of filing rejoinder.
The Court said such permission cannot be granted.
“If there are no specific allegations contained in the petition, it cannot be allowed to be supplied by way of rejoinder as that is not the scope of rejoinder”
-observed the Court.
“Considering that the matter has now been enquired and order has been passed, we are not inclined to proceed further in the matter. It would, however, be open for the petitioners to file a properly constituted petition to demonstrate by clinching material sustaining allegations of either work done, not done or not fully done, yet payments made under the MGNREGA scheme of the Government. The petition is disposed of accordingly”
-the order reads.