The Supreme Court directed the Centre to file response by May 4 to the petitions seeking review of last December’s verdict by which the apex court had dismissed the pleas challenging India’s deal to procure 36 Rafale fighter jets from France.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi did not allow the plea of the Centre that it be granted four weeks time to file its response to the pleas. It asked it to submit the response latest by Saturday.
The bench, which also comprised Justices S K Kaul and K M Joseph, has fixed May 6 for hearing the petitions.
Former Union ministers Arun Shourie and Yashwant Sinha and activist lawyer Prashant Bhushan have filed a petition seeking review of the December 14, 2018 verdict of the apex court giving clean chit to the Rafale deal.
Besides the trio, AAP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh has also filed a separate review petition in the case.
In the verdict, the apex court said there was no occasion to doubt the decision-making process in the procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets from France and dismissed all the petitions seeking an investigation into alleged irregularities in the Rs 58,000 crore deal.
The top court had said there was no substantial evidence of commercial favouritism to any private entity.
On January 2, Sinha, Shourie and Bhushan had approached the apex court seeking review of the judgement, alleging that the court had relied upon “patently incorrect” claims made by the government in an unsigned note given in a sealed cover in the court.
The Centre had submitted that three privileged documents were unauthorisedly removed from the Defence Ministry and used by the petitioners to support their review petitions against the verdict which had dismissed all pleas challenging the procurement of the fighter jets.