Bandhs: HC tells govt to spell out its stand

HC tells govt to spell out its stand on bandhs

The High Court of Karnataka on Tuesday directed the state government to file a written statement over its stand on granting permission to bandhs in connection with a batch of petitions challenging permission to bandh on April 12 by various pro-Kannada organisations, including Vatal Nagaraj's outfit, over Cauvery issue.

During the hearing, a division bench comprising Chief Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice B M Shyam Prasad, advocate representing one of the petitioners, submitted that, these pro-Kannada organisations call bandh again and again by violating the court order. Even the state government support bandhs called by Vatal Nagaraj who also blackmails the government which has failed in controlling such bandhs, he contended.

Responding to the submission, Justice Maheswari observed that the court has already passed an order on February 2 in connection with the bandhs and there were no bandhs after that. "If you (petitioners) have proof to show that government has not taken any steps to control bandhs, submit that to the court," he told them.

Justice Maheswari observed that the court has passed the order stating that, according to Supreme Court order, if bandhs were called by any person or organisations is unconstitutional and they have no rights under constitution to call bandhs. Despite such orders, petitions have been filed before the court which is disappointing, he observed.

The bench further directed the advocate representing the state government to file a written statement over its stand on bandh and adjourned the case Wednesday (April 11).

Following the Cauvery water dispute, pro-Kannada activist Vatal Nagaraj and other organisations have called a bandh on April 12 and this was challenged by C Raja, president of Rajajinagar Shradha Poshakara Sangha and others.

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