The Madhya Pradesh high court stayed the 'no helmet, no petrol' order on Tuesday and asked the district authorities to explain within a week’s time why such an order was imposed.
The stay may have far-reaching repercussions as the 'no helmet, no petrol' order had come into effect across the state from April 1, 2015.
District collector Akash Tripathi had issued the order in the district on March 25, mandating fuel pump operators to sell petrol only to the two-wheeler riders who wore helmets or face legal action under Section 3/7 of the Essential Commodities Act 1955.
The order was challenged by advocate Saurabh Mishra in the court on April 1. Hearing the case on Tuesday, the division bench of justice P K Jaiswal and justice Alok Verma observed, "It (the order) is violative of Article 21 of the Constitution of India and will amount to an unreasonable restriction within the meaning of Article 19(1)(G), guaranteed under the right to freedom to practice any profession, or to carry on any occupation, trade or business."
The high court clarified that the collector or the licensing authority might issue an order for ensuring equitable distribution of essential articles, but they had no power to impose unreasonable restrictions.
The court first heard the case on April 6 and reserved its order. On April 7, the court issued the show-cause notices to the district collector and the food and civil supplies principal secretary, asking them to reply within a week as to why they imposed the order.