The Court also took a prima facie favourable view to the direction by Ministry of Defence to establish selfie points at various defence institutions and sainik schools to showcase the achievements of MoD.
“When miners were trapped in Uttarakhand, Indian Army and NDRF did a phenomenal job. If Army wants to popularize it with selfie point, I don’t think anyone can have grievance. Suppose I see a selfie point on pension benefits, my reaction would be what is the benefit. Would it not lead to “debate or enquiry” on this aspect,” the Court asked.
Specifically on the issue of using Prime Minister’s photographs at such selfie points, the Court remarked,
“Isn’t this norm? Each and every Chief Minister is putting photos [in advertisements]?”
The Court was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) petition challenging the use of civil servants and defence personnel for promotion of government schemes and policies.
The plea sought quashing of two orders issued by the government – one by MoD that directed the Army, Navy and the Air Force to set up selfie points with images of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to showcase achievements of MoD and another issued by Department of Personnel and Training to deploy Joint Secretaries/ Directors/ Deputy Secretaries as District Rath Prabharis to showcase the achievements of last 9 years of the Government of India.