The Supreme Court has dismissed a Public Interest Litigation challenging the constitutional validity of Section 55(c) and Section 11 of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972.
Section 11 of the Act empowers the Chief Wild Life Warden to permit hunting of wild animals to be permitted in certain cases, if he is satisfied that any wild animal specified in Schedule I has become dangerous to human life or is so disabled or diseased as to be beyond recovery. Section 9 of the Act provides that no person shall hunt any wild animal specified in Schedules I, II, III and IV except as provided under section 11 and section 12 (Grant of permit for special purposes).
Section 55(c) No court shall take cognizance of any offence against this Act on the complaint of any person other than a person who has given notice of not less than sixty days, in the manner prescribed, of the alleged offence and of his intention to make a complaint, to the Central Government or the State Government or the officer authorised.
Red Lynx Confederation, had approached the Apex Court contending that these provisions are 'unconstitutional and inhumane'. As an interim relief, the petitioner sought a direction to Secretary Government of India to destroy all the trophies that are lying in the house of Nawab Sh. Shafath Ali Khan and others offenders. The petitioner also sought a direction to direction to Centralize all the weapon license holders data and activities through an intelligence software for strict monitoring of crop protection and sports category to avoid illegal use weapon and ammunition( explosives). It also prayed for forming a committee under Honorable Retired Justice ot NGT, or any High Court of India or Sitting/Retired Justice of Supreme Court who are specialized in Forest and Wildlife to 'to formulate Investigation for reported matter u/s 55(c ) Wildlife Protection Act.'
While dismissing the plea, the bench comprising Justices DY Chandrachud and KM Joseph said:
Besides what is noted above, the relief sought in prayer clause 1 cannot be granted. Moreover the reliefs which have been sought in prayer clauses 2 and 3 trench upon an area of policy. No valid basis has been indicated in the petition in respect of the prayer for challenging the constitutional validity of Section 55(c) and Section 11 of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972. In the absence of any cogent foundation in the pleadings both on facts and law, we are not inclined to entertain the petition under Article 32. A petitioner who moves the court purportedly in public interest is not exempt from observing the essential principles of pleading."
The bench clarified that it has not adjudicated upon any issue which may arise in an appropriate case and that it is open for the petitioner to pursue appropriate remedies in accordance with law.
Case name: RED LYNX CONFEDERATION vs. UNION OF INDIA Case no.: Writ Petition(s)(Criminal) No(s).166/2020 Coram: Justices DY Chandrachud and KM Joseph Appearance: Sangeeta Dogra, Petitioner-in-person, AOR Vikas Mehta
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