Chitra Ramkrishna, the former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Stock Exchange (NSE), has moved a plea before the Delhi High Court challenging the definitions of ‘public duty’ and ‘public servant’ under the Prevention of Corruption Act (PC Act) [Chitra Ramkrishna v Union of India and Anr]..A Division Bench of Justice Suresh Kumar Kait and Shalinder Kaur on Friday sought the response of the Central government and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in the matter.The Court said it will hear the case on December 19, 2023..Ramkrishna has challenged Sections 2(b) and 2(c)(viii) of the PC Act.Section 2(b) defines public duty as the “duty in the discharge of which the State, the public or the community at large has an interest." Section 2(c)(viii) says that a public servant includes any person “who holds an office by virtue of which he is authorised or required to perform any public duty.”.Ramkrishna is an accused in the alleged NSE co-location scam case. She has been accused of frequently revising the designation and compensation of former NSE employee, Anand Subramanian..Senior Advocate N Hariharan appeared for Ramkrishna and told the Court that these definitions are too expansive and that they have been enlarged to charge people who are not public servants but privately employed people.Hariharan added that the NSE is a private company registered under the Companies Act and yet, Ramkrishna has been categorised as a 'public servant.'.Hariharan today also challenged the sanction for Ramkrishna’s prosecution under the PC Act, arguing that the same was invalid.“It is not even a proper sanction. It is a qualified sanction. It says that sanction is being given in peculiar facts and circumstances of the case and that NSE does not concede that its employees are public servants,” he stated..Hariharan added that if the sanction is quashed, the jurisdiction of the special court to deal with the matter would also go.“As far as jurisdiction [of special court] is concerned, the jurisdiction of special court is vested by way of sanction. Jurisdiction has come by way for this [sanction]. If the sanction goes, jurisdiction goes," he said..Meanwhile, advocate Anupam S Sharma appeared for the CBI and said that all the issues raised by the petitioner (Ramkrishna) have already been settled by the Supreme Court, which has said that even a "sprinkle of aid" from the government is enough to categorise employees of an organisation as public servants. Sharma also referred to Adani’s case and stated that the petitioner’s acts were connected to the economy of the country.“We saw what happened in the Adani case. When his shares went down, India’s economy came down and as it started going up, the economy is going up again," he submitted. Justice Kait responded by remarking that it is Adani’s company’s shares and that if they went up, he (Adani) would pay more taxes or if they come down, he would have to pay less tax..The Court then ordered the parties to file written submissions and said the matter would next be heard on December 19. .The case against Ramkrishna stems from a February 11 order of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) which found that Ramakrishna had allegedly been involved in financial misdeeds relating to fixation and frequent revision of compensation of another former NSE employee, Anand Subramanian in a disproportionate manner. She is alleged to have done this in cahoots with someone whom she claimed to be a “Siddha Purusha."The CBI said that Subramanian, while performing a public duty to protect the interest of common investors, indulged in criminal conspiracy with other co-accused and caused a huge advantage to various trading members/brokers. Thus, she committed a serious economic offence, the CBI alleged. The other allegation against Ramkrishna was that she was in touch through e-mails with a Himalayan Yogi who the CBI later claimed to be none other than Subramanian.