During the hearing, the Justice Kaul one again said that city roads were not meant for indefinite protests. (Photo Credit: IANS File Photo)
New Delhi :
The Supreme Court on Wednesday said that the environment was not conducive for the hearing of the Shaheen Bagh plea. While refusing to pass any interim order to remove the agitators from the Shaheen Bagh protest site, the top court said that it will hear the matter after Holi vacation on March 23. Though the apex court justified the appointment of the interlocutors, however, it added that both senior counsels didn’t get any success to persuade the protesters to shift to a new venue. “Situation need to cool down before Shaheen Bagh matter can be taken up,” the top court said.
A bench of Justices SK Kaul and KM Joseph also said that will not hear the plea related to Delhi violence as the High Court had taken up the matter. During the hearing, the Justice Kaul one again said that city roads were not meant for indefinite protests.
Shaheen Bagh protests that began following the violence in the Jamia Millia Islamia over the citizenship law has been continuing since December 15 last year. While the protests have been peaceful, the very point of road blockade has been politicised by leaders of the ruling BJP. Several provocative statements were issued by BJP leaders such as Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and Parvesh Verma targeting the Shaheen Bagh protests. Except Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, no other leader in AAP has explicitly come out in support of the protests.
Earlier this month, there were reports that a delegation of the Shaheen Bagh protesters were supposed to meet Union Home Minister Amit Shah. However, the meeting never took place as no formal request was made to the home ministry. Local traders rue over lack of business due to Shaheen Bagh protests. Commuters from Noida have been facing trouble due to the blockade. On February 24, Advocate Sadhna Ramachandran, who was appointed an interlocutor along with senior advocate Sanjay Hegde, placed the report before a bench of Justices SK Kaul and KM Joseph.
The apex court had earlier said that though people have a fundamental right to protest "peacefully and lawfully", it was troubled by the blocking of a public road at Shaheen Bagh as it might lead to a "chaotic situation". Restrictions have been imposed on the Kalindi Kunj-Shaheen Bagh stretch and the Okhla underpass, which were closed on December 15 last year due to protests against CAA and NRC. Separately, former BJP MLA Nand Kishore Garg has filed a plea in the apex court seeking directions to authorities to remove protestors from Shaheen Bagh.
(With agency inputs)