A day after West bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the national capital and urged the latter to withdrew the decision to extend the territorial jurisdiction of BSF in her state, a PIL was filed at the Calcutta High Court challenging the Home Ministry’s decision, terming it as against the federal structure of the country.
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) recently extended the jurisdiction of the Border Security Force (BSF) up to 50 km inside the international borders in West Bengal, Punjab and Assam. The West Bengal Assembly had on November 16 passed a resolution against the Centre’s decision, becoming the second state after Punjab to oppose the move in the state legislature.
The public interest litigation (PIL) filed at the Calcutta High Court said the decision to increase the territorial jurisdiction of BSF is against the federal structure of the Indian Constitution. The petitioner also said that the MHA decision will reduce the power of the state.
Pleading for the petitioner, advocate Sabyasachi Chattopadhyay said, “Initially we thought the Chief Minister would do something against this unconstitutional move, but she is doing nothing. She is going to Delhi, but doing nothing. This is an issue that goes against the federal structure of the country. We have questioned the constitutional viability of the law.”
The division bench of Chief Justice Prakash Srivastava directed the Director General of BSF to inform the court about the case. The next hearing is scheduled on December 14.