SC to hear Tuesday WB BJP's plea on denial of 'yatras'

Senior advocate Ranjit Kumar mentioned the matter before a bench presided over by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi on behalf of the political party, contending that it was not being allowed to launch the programme.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday will consider a plea by the West Bengal BJP against the denial of permission to carry out 'contact programme' (yatras) in the state.

Senior advocate Ranjit Kumar mentioned the matter before a bench presided over by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi on behalf of the political party, contending that it was not being allowed to launch the programme.

The bench, also comprising Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, agreed to list the special leave petition on Monday.

But on a request by West Bengal government counsel, the court changed the date of hearing to Tuesday.

The party challenged a Calcutta High Court's division bench order of December 21, restraining it from taking out 'yatras' to cover each constituency of the state.

The party, in its petition, contended its fundamental right to hold a peaceful 'yatra' cannot be withheld merely on the ground of “surmises and conjectures” as made out by the state government authorities.

“It is totally against the constitutional values of the nation as the right to protest has been recognised as a fundamental right under the Constitution and the assumptions cannot lead to arbitrary actions on the pretext of reasonable restrictions,” it said.

The party sought an immediate stay of the division bench order and sustaining of a single bench order permitting its 'yatras' as any further delay would lead its entire arrangement go waste.

It claimed the state government was showing political vendetta and willfully trying to stop the petitioner from exercising its right to protest in violation of the democratic fabric of the country.

The 'ganatantra bachao yatra' to cover 42 constituency of West Bengal, which was originally scheduled from December 7 has been re-scheduled but it cannot be started due to “illegal denial” of permission by the state authorities.

“Every time the petitioner is facing the same vindictive attitude of the state government. The state government cannot have any colour but in West Bengal, the government and the executives are working as political agents of All India Trinamool Congress and showing political vendetta towards the opposition,” it said.

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SC to hear Tuesday WB BJP's plea on denial of 'yatras'

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