The Writ of Quo Warranto

A Writ of Quo Warranto cannot be issued on the basis of assumptions, inferences or suspicion regarding the factum of fulfillment of eligibility criteria. Being an extraordinary power, ordinarily such a Writ ought to be issued only on the basis of indisputable facts leading to a singular conclusion that the incumbent was in fact or in law disqualified to occupy the public office or has incurred disqualification to continue to remain therein. Only whence such a person would fall within the description of a usurper of public office without legal authority.

Suffice, it to observe that unless the Court is satisfied that the incumbent was not eligible at all as per the statutory provisions for being appointed or elected to the public office or that he/she has incurred disqualification to continue in the said office, which satisfaction should be founded on the indisputable facts, the High Court ought not to entertain the prayer for issuance of a Writ of Quo Warranto.

Hon’ble Justice A.M. KhanwilkarBharati Reddy v. State of Karnataka, [Civil Appeal No. 1763 of 2018].