Sibal takes on judges, says let the court allocate spectrum, explain its orders

FP

He added: "India is a good market for FDI and we must all be circumspect that we don't do anything with the best of intentions to stall the Indian growth story. Uncertainty seems to have set in in the telecom sector, which doesn't augur well for us. We are trying to revive a sector that is in debt in excess of Rs 2 lakh crore. We tried to reverse the sentiment. Unfortunately, in the prevailing circumstances, we are bound hand and foot. If the government doesn't have enough free play at the joints to decide on a particular course of action for a sector, then I think we will have to rethink the role of institutions and the contours of their jurisdiction."

While stating that "it is the duty of the court to set aside the allocation of any licence with respect to any commodity if it is coloured with acts of corruption", Sibal said: "The problem is that whereas the government is accountable, to the legislature, to the people and to the courts, the courts in turn must, while performing their function, also be circumspect that under the scheme of the Constitution, though they are the final arbiters of law, they shouldn't willy-nilly do something beyond the contours of their jurisdiction. This is particularly true when judgements of courts are the final arbiters of the nation's destiny. I think we need to introspect that a complex country like India can only move forward if all institutions exercise a level of restraint consistent with national objectives. That applies to everybody. We can't play a fair game of cricket without rules."

Sibal said that while he didn't want to comment on the manner in which courts should decide cases, one thing that is clear is that courts must not get into policy that is the domain of the Executive.

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