The Allahabad High Court on Monday will pronounce its verdict on the issue of the Lucknow administration putting up posters and hoardings targeting those protesting the Citizenship Amendment Act. Earlier on Sunday, the court had reserved its order and asked the State government to take down all the hoardings across Lucknow by 3 pm.
Taking suo moto cognizance of public interest litigation on the issue the High Court in an unprecedented sitting on Sunday, a court holiday, termed the act of putting up photos of protesters as "unjust".
Lawyer KK Rai had on Sunday said that the court has observed that the act is an encroachment into a citizen's right to privacy. "The court observed that the government could do something to rectify it," he had further said.
Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice Ramesh Sinha summoned the District Magistrate and Lucknow Divisional Commissioner of Police for the display of details of more than 50 people who were suspected of violence.
The first hearing took place at 10 am, when the bench, led by Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice Ramesh Sinha raised the issue and asked the government to take down all the banners by 3 pm. The bench stated that the boards were highly unjust and were an "encroachment" on personal liberty. It had told the UP advocate general that “good sense should prevail” and that the state must remove the hoardings before 3 pm Sunday and inform the court about it.
Authorities in Lucknow put up roadside banners with photographs of people asked to pay compensation for damage to public property during anti-CAA protests, triggering outrage among those being named and shamed. The banners came up at major road crossings in Lucknow late on Thursday night on the directions of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, an official said.
They bear photographs, names, and addresses of those accused of vandalism during protests in December against the Citizenship Amendment Act. It included the names of Shia cleric Maulana Saif Abbas from Darapuri and Congress leader Sadaf Jafar. Some activists who figure in the posters have said they will go to court over the "public humiliation" when the charges against them are yet to be proved.
In Lucknow, around 50 people were identified by police as alleged rioters and were served such notices. After the violent protests in December, Adityanath had warned that those who took part in any vandalism will have to pay for the damage.