BCCI President Sourav Ganguly was imposed a token cost of INR 10,000 by a division bench of Calcutta High Court, presided by acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice Arijit Banerjee, for improper allotment of a plot to the former Indian skipper.
The court also imposed a sanction of INR 50,000 on the West Bengal government and a state-owned corporation by the name, WBHIDCO due to their participation in the same case. Ganguly had acquired it in order to set up a school in the New Town area close to Kolkata.
“We need not quash the allotment of plot as the same stands already surrendered, however, for the conduct of the State in generating litigation by arbitrary exercise of power which runs totally contrary to the law laid down by the Supreme Court, we impose a cost of Rs 50,000 each on State and WBHIDCO (West Bengal Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation).”
“The state government and HIDCO will be at liberty to recover the cost from the respective persons in their employment, who were responsible for the irregular allotment of the concerned plot of land in favour of the Respondent,” the court order said.
When it comes to law, no one can claim to be exclusive – Court order against Sourav Ganguly
The division bench continued by stating that there’s a necessity to have certain policies beforehand to ensure there’s no arbitrary exercise of power when it comes to such matters. The aforementioned plot of land was handed over to WBHIDCO in August last year.
“The country always stands by the sportspersons, especially those who represent the country in international events. It is also a fact that Sourav Ganguly has brought laurels for the country in cricket.“
“But when it comes to law, our Constitutional Scheme is that all are equal and no one can claim to be exclusive, above the law and seek benefits from the State, especially when question arises for allotment of plots for commercial ventures,” the bench added.
The Public Interest Litigation (PIL) on the subject was filed in 2016 that challenged the allotment of two acres of land to BCCI President Sourav Ganguly and the ‘Ganguly Education and Welfare Society’.