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The majority judgement observes the decision is not vitiated by lack of power with the Center. But, yes, there is considerable merit in the dissenting verdict when it says that minting of Rs 2000 notes flies in the face of one of the objectives of demonetisation.
The Supreme Court's majority judgement upholding the admittedly cataclysmic demonetisation of the 500 and 1000-rupee notes that sucked out 86 percent of currency in circulation through one stroke on the night of 8th November 2016 is one way a slap in the face of Modi baiters. However, the dissenting verdict essentially state that its objectives have not been met substantially and the decision was unlawful on legal grounds.
The view of Justice Gavai that was in majority says Center has the power to demonetise all series of notes and that the notification did not suffer from any flaw. Indeed, in the six months in the run up to the fateful day, there were widespread consultations between the government and the RBI. The 52-day window given for exchange of the demonetised notes was reasonable said the Court as a majority view. The court said the decision was not hit by the doctrine of proportionality as it sought to address the vexed and mammoth problems of black money, counterfeit notes and terror funding.
As many as 58 petitioners had challenged the demonetisation. Earlier when the nation was soldiering on with the lack of currency notes and waiting in serpentine queues, the SC took a principled stand, and refused to stay the executive decision. It has now shown admirable hands-off policy in refusing to sit in judgement over the decision which otherwise would have set a bad precedent with country getting divided right down the middle. Someone in its wake might have called in question say Pandit Nehru’s naïve trust in Hindi-Chini bhai bhai slogan of Chou En Lai way back in 1962. The SC must be commended for not setting the wheels of retributions and reprisals in motion.