A review petition challenging the verdict on Shaheen Bagh protests has been dismissed by the Supreme Court as it stated that prolonged protests cannot be carried out at the cost of continued occupation of public spaces. ALSO READ | Arrested Jaish-e-Mohammed Terrorist Reveals NSA Ajit Doval Was The Target After India’s Surgical Strike In Uri
A Bench headed by Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Aniruddha Bose and Krishna Murari has rejected the plea seeking a review of October 2020, judgment where the top court ruled that public spaces cannot be occupied indefinitely.
The bench ruled that the “right to protest cannot be anytime and everywhere”, as reported by Bar & Bench.
“Public ways and public spaces cannot be occupied in such a manner and that too indefinitely. Democracy and dissent go hand in hand, but then the demonstrations expressing dissent have to be in designated places alone,” Supreme Court had stated in its October 2020 judgment.
In the February ruling, the top court again stated that “Constitutional scheme comes with a right to protest and express dissent but with an obligation to have certain duties. The right to protest cannot be anytime and everywhere. There may be some spontaneous protests but in case of prolonged dissent or protest, there cannot be continued occupation of public place affecting rights of others”.
The case is in reference to the massive Shaheen Bagh protest which was held to oppose the implementation of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act. The protest was widely debated as one section of people lauded the women who stay put in unity while others opposed how it became an inconvenience for locals as traffic jams, diversions were reported to have become major issues on an almost daily basis.
The review plea was filed as petitioners expressed concerns that this ruling may be used as a license by police to “commit atrocities on legitimate voice of protest, especially protesters coming from vulnerable sections”.
It was added that this may create a scenario where no dialogue happens with protesters but would instead police take action against them.
News source : Abp Live