Issues related to farmers' protest serious, don't file petitions for publicity: SC

PTI | New Delhi | Updated: 04-03-2024 14:38 IST | Created: 04-03-2024 14:38 IST
Issues related to farmers' protest serious, don't file petitions for publicity: SC
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Issues related to farmers' protest are ''serious'', the Supreme Court said on Monday and asked a litigant to desist from filing petitions based only on newspaper reports for publicity.

A bench of Justices Surya Kant and KV Viswanathan, allowed petitioner Agnostos Theos, the Managing Director of the Sikh Chamber of Commerce, to withdraw his plea that alleged violation of the rights of the ''peacefully protesting'' farmers by the Centre and some states.

A request for withdrawal of the plea was made at the very start of the hearing by a counsel for Theos who said he intended to amend the petition.

''These are very serious issues. Don't file these petitions based only on newspapers reports for publicity purposes. Only those persons who are serious and committed should file these petitions. If you have gone through the newspaper reports, then you must be aware that the high court is seized of the matter,'' Justice Kant told the counsel.

The bench said the petitioner must know that the high court has already passed certain directions on the issue.

''Next time be careful. Do your own research, these are complex issues,'' the bench told the counsel and allowed him to withdraw the petition.

Theos claimed in his plea that the Centre and some states have issued ''threats'' and fortified the national capital's borders, after several farmer unions called protests seeking legal guarantee for minimum support price (MSP) for their crops and implementation of the Swaminathan committee's recommendations.

''The petitioner is seeking a writ of mandamus in the interest of the farmers who are facing unfair treatment in their peaceful protests,'' it said.

It claimed some protesters were arrested and forcibly detained by various state governments, and the Centre unduly invoked prohibitory measures, including blocking social media accounts, rerouting traffic and blocking roads.

It alleged the governments of Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh have employed ''aggressive and violent measures'', like using tear gas, rubber bullets and pellets against the farmers, causing them serious injuries.

In the absence of medical aid, the injuries got aggravated and also caused deaths, the plea claimed, adding fortifications at Delhi's borders have created a ''hostile and violent situation'', and did not allow the farmers to exercise their democratic right to protest. The plea sought a direction to the Centre, the four states and the National Human Rights Commission to ''consider the reasonable demands of the farmers from across India, who are in continuous peaceful protest, demonstration and agitation''.

It also sought directions to the respondents to ensure ''fair and respectful treatment of the protesting farmers'', besides allowing free movement.

The plea sought a report about alleged human rights violations by police, besides adequate compensation for the victim farmers and their families.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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