New Delhi, Feb 20: The Supreme Court today directed six states to file their responses challenging the inclusion of tainted persons in their Council of Ministers.
Counsel for the petitioner informed a bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices R V Raveendran and J M Panchal that states of Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Orissa have not filed their responses till date to the PIL filed by one Manoj Narula. The petitioner has challenged the inclusion of Railway Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav, Taslimuddin, Fatmi, Premchand Gupta and others in the Union Council of Ministers as several criminal cases are pending against them.
The apex court granted four weeks time to the six states to file their responses.
According to the petitioner, appointment in the Council of Ministers of persons, with pending criminal cases, at the Centre and the states, amounted to criminalisation of politics.