Madhya Pradesh HC denies nod for protest in public space
Madhya Pradesh high court’s principal bench at Jabalpur has dismissed a petition seeking direction to hold a protest against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act, the National Population Register and the proposed National Register of Citizens, saying that protests cannot be permitted in public places.
The bench pronounced the judgment on Friday while hearing a petition filed by Javed Khan, a resident of Jabalpur and state president of the Indian Muslim League, an official at the Jabalpur district administration said on Saturday.
Khan had submitted two representations to Jabalpur district collector Bharat Yadav on January 27 and February 1, 2020, seeking permissions to hold peaceful protests against the CAA, NRC and NPR. As the collector failed to decide on the matter, Khan approached the high court on February 20.
Observing the order, Justice Vishal Dhagat said: “The petitioner has also sought a relief that they may be permitted to hold a peaceful protest against the CAA, NRC and NPR. Petitioner has not mentioned the place where peaceful protest is to take place. Petitioner can’t be allowed to do protest at public places.”
“The petitioner has filed the present writ petition seeking a writ of mandamus to direct the collector to decide the representations which are pending against him. To maintain law and order situation is to be decided by the administration. The court will not interfere and give direction to the collector to decide such representations,” Dhagat said.
Petitioner Javed Khan said, “I sought permission from the district administration to hold a protest at a private land, not public place. I will seek legal opinion and challenge the HC judgement before a larger beach of the high court or Supreme Court. Holding a peaceful protest is our right.”