SC against contorting language of law

The Supreme Court has held that the courts do not have power to twist the language of a statute to avoid hardships being caused to anyone in administration of the law.

A Bench of Justices B S Chauhan and F M I Kalifullah explained the principle of interpretation of laws while rejecting plea of a group of assistant commandant-level officers in Border Security Force (BSF) who sought to be treated on a par with the seniority of other group on the ground that they were selected from one single recruitment process.

Their argument was that they could not be accorded different seniority just because all selected candidates were divided into two different batches and the training of their batch started late due to administrative reasons like police verification, medical examination etc.

The apex court relied upon the interpretation of the rule which  stated that in the case of direct entrants, the date of appointment shall be the date of commencement of their training course at the BSF Academy.

“The courts have to administer the law as they find it, and it is not permissible for the court to twist the clear language of the enactment, in order to avoid any real, or imaginary hardship which such literal interpretation may cause,” the Bench said.

“It becomes crystal clear that, under the garb of interpreting the provision, the court does not have the power to add or subtract even a single word, as it would not amount to interpretation, but legislation,” the court added.

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