Restraining Gorkhaland agitators from its proposed July 27 siege of a national highway, the economic lifeline of Sikkim, the Supreme Court on Monday directed issue of fresh contempt notices to Gorkha Janmukti Morcha President Bimal Gurung and Assistant Secretary Bimoy Tamangon.
A Bench of Justices Altamas Kabir and AK Patnaik, terming the defiance of its earlier contempt notice as "a serious matter", said the fresh notices should be inserted in the Silguri editions of the "Statesman" and "Sikkim Express."
The apex court asked the alleged contemnors to respond within four weeks and said its earlier directions that there shall not be any siege of the National Highway 31 would continue to be operative.
The directions were passed after senior counsel P H Parekh, appearing for the petitioner O P Bhandari, submitted the two Gorkha leaders had refused to accept the notices served on them even though the apex court had issued contempt notices to them.
He submitted even while refusing to accept the contempt notices, the duo had given a call for a fresh siege of the Highway on July 27 in support of their demand for a separate Gorkhaland.