HCA election: SC restrains Telangana HC, district court from passing orders on working of Justice Rao committee

The Supreme Court restrained the Telangana High Court and a district court in the southern state on Friday from passing orders regarding the working of a single-member committee of former apex court judge L Nageswara Rao, who was appointed to oversee the elections of the office-bearers of the Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA).

The top court passed the order after it was brought to its notice that several orders have been issued by the high court and some proceedings have also been filed before the district court.

“In our view, no such proceedings could have been initiated at all,” said a bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Sudhanshu Dhulia, adding that if there is any grievance, the remedy lies before the apex court.

“The result of the aforesaid is that we restrain the high court and the district court from passing any order qua the working of the single-member committee,” it said.

The bench made it clear that if orders have been passed, they will not be given effect to.

The top court passed the order while dealing with an application filed by the single-member committee.

It said the order has been specifically passed keeping in mind the apex court’s jurisdiction under Article 142 of the Constitution.

Article 142 deals with enforcement of decrees and orders of the apex court to do “complete justice” in any matter pending before it. According to Article 142(1), a decree passed or an order made by the apex court shall be enforceable throughout the territory of India.

The bench noted that various parties were approaching the high court to seek different orders in the matter and some proceedings have also been filed before the district court.

It made it clear that the pendency of any application before the top court will not come in the way of the committee proceeding with the mandate to hold the elections.

It posted the matter for further hearing on October 31.

“We wanted to sort out this mess,” the bench observed.

Through its February 14 order, the apex court appointed Justice (retired) Rao as the single-member committee and said it would be open to him to take the assistance of whatever person or authority if he so desired.

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It had observed that the question was how to ensure fair and proper elections so that the matter could be put to rest.

The apex court is hearing some pleas, including appeals filed against an order of the Telangana High Court.

The high court had set aside an order of a Hyderabad civil court to suspend the decision of the apex council of the HCA to appoint a former apex court judge as the ombudsman-cum-ethics officer of the cricket association.

Earlier, the top court had expressed strong displeasure over the functioning of the faction-ridden HCA and the row on the issue of appointment of the ombudsman and said it would order an inquiry into the whole issue by a former apex court or high court judge.

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