A day ahead of Delhi elections, the Supreme Court said it would hear the pleas against protests at Shaheen Bagh on February 10. The top court said that it did not want to "influence" the Delhi assembly elections by hearing the matter on Friday.
"We understand there is a problem and we have to see how to resolve it. We will take it up on Monday. We will be in a better position by then," a bench comprising justices S K Kaul and K M Joseph said. When an advocate appearing for one of the petitioners said that voting for Delhi election is scheduled on February 8, the bench said, "That is exactly why we are saying come on Monday. Why should we influence it?"
The bench also asked the petitioners to come prepared on Monday to argue on why the matter should not be remitted back to the Delhi High Court. BJP leader Nand Kishore Garg had urged the top court for an urgent hearing, considering the difficulty faced by residents due to the nearly-two-month-long protest on a road connecting Delhi and Noida. Also, various other arterial roads of Delhi have been facing traffic congestion due to the protest. Restrictions have been imposed on the Kalindi Kunj-Shaheen Bagh stretch and Okhla underpass since December 15, when hundreds of women sat on a protest against the amended law.
It said a similar plea was filed by another litigant in the Delhi High Court, which on January 14 directed the local authority to deal with the situation. The litigant has filed an appeal in the top court against the high court order and sought supervision of the situation in Shaheen Bagh by a retired Supreme Court judge or a sitting judge of the Delhi High Court.
(Inputs from PTI)