The Delhi High Court refuses to hear the PIL against hookah bars after finding the Petition “bogus”

The Delhi High Court on 24th September rejected the petition which raised concerns regarding the spread of hookah bars in South Delhi. While giving the rationale for the same, the Court pointed out that the petition contained only “general allegations”, without reference to any specific illegal hookah joint. Expressing its displeasure over “bogus” Public Interest Litigations, the Delhi High Court said that the petitioners in PILs must come after doing their homework. Petitions which are “bogus” or “blackmailing” in nature are detrimental to the society.

The petition was filed by a freelance court clerk who sought a direction to the Delhi Police and SDMC to inspect and take action against such illegal hookah joints. This made the court question his locus standi.  While the Petitioner was unable to prove the same, he said that he was around South Delhi when he noticed that several hookah bars were being operated in violation of the law and orders issued by the Delhi Government.

The bench comprising of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan, stated, “Everyone is a champion of bogus PILs.”

The Court stated that the PIL would be dismissed with heavy costs and further remarked, “PIL petitioner has to do their homework. All are super government; all are super police”

The Court in the end allowed the Petitioner to withdraw the petition and said that such matters deserved to be dismissed with a heavy cost but keeping in mind the current pandemic, the same was not imposed.