The Supreme Court on Friday will hear the petitions seeking direction to the Central government for laying down comprehensive guidelines relating to restrictions for holding protests causing obstruction of public places. The petitions, filed by Dr. Nand Kishore Garg and Amit Sahni, also sought appropriate directions to the Centre and others for removal of protesters from Shaheen Bagh near Kalindi Kunj in Delhi.
Earlier on Monday, Advocate Shashank Deo Sudhi, appearing on behalf of Garg had mentioned the matter before a three-judge Bench of the top court headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Sharad Arvind Bobde, who asked him to approach the registry for urgent listing of the matter.
The petition seeks appropriate direction to the respondents, including the Union of India (UOI) for laying down detailed, comprehensive and exhaustive guidelines relating to outright restrictions for holding protest/agitation leading to obstruction of the public place. It said that people in Shaheen Bagh are illegally protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) 2019, by blocking the common and public road connecting Delhi and Noida.
On the other hand, Sahni's petition sought direction to authorities and Delhi police to look into and examine on a daily basis the content of speeches of political leaders/speakers so as "to ascertain whether it is provoking the public to create law and order problem or it pertains to their demands, etc, in order to circumvent all anti-national organisations to take benefit of the sensitive situation."
The application further added that the protestors, who have closed the Shaheen Bagh-Kalindi Kunj road have been using innocent children for protesting against CAA/NRC at Shaheen Bagh. Sahni added that considering the seriousness of the issue and its impact on children, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights had asked Delhi authorities to identify and arrange to counsel for children seen at protests in Shaheen Bagh.
Over 50 days on, women have been at the forefront of the sit-in protest, ever since mid-December, in the Shaheen Bagh area to oppose the contentious Citizenship Amended Act (CAA) and proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC). They have occupied the stretch of the area. The Shaheen Bagh protest of over a month and a half has blocked the road in Delhi holding the city to ransom by causing inconvenience to Delhi civilians during transit as well as to the emergency services such as ambulances and fire brigade.