The Uttar Pradesh government would move the Supreme Court soon for a stay on the court’s recent order that bars government advertisements from carrying pictures of any personality other than the President, the Prime Minister and the Chief Justice of India. After seeking the stay, the state government would also challenge the order.
“We will petition the vacation bench of the SC for an immediate stay order. We will take the plea that the judgment was made ex parte without hearing the state government,” said a senior officer of the state government.
For its part, the state government said that any recent advertisement or advertorial with photographs of the chief minister or any other minister were either non-government advertisements or ‘activity pictures’.
“The SC order restrains glorification pictures, and our ads were not featuring any such pictures. They are only activity pictures and there is no ban on such pictures,” said the officer.
The UP government was the first to express its reservations over the SC judgment and say it was in “contravention of the federal structure”.
Gaurav Bhatia, president of the legal cell of Samajwadi Party and a Supreme Court lawyer, had said: “We respect the judgment of the SC. It would have far reaching consequences.”
He, however, clarified that initially the committee that made recommendations to the SC had put the governor and the chief minister in the states on a par with the president and the prime minister at the centre. But in the final judgment, the chief minister and the governor were omitted.