Farmers Protest: Supreme Court refuses to entertain plea to remove protesters from highways

The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to entertain a public interest litigation (PIL) petition seeking the immediate removal of farmers from the borders of the national capital, amidst the ongoing farmers’ protest demanding minimum price guarantees for their crops.

Former BJP MLA Nand Kishore Garg moved the Supreme Court with the plea. A bench of Justice Surya Kant and Justice KV Viswanathan refused to hear the Public Interest Litigation (PIL). The bench directed the petitioner to address the matter in the Punjab and Haryana High Court, where the issue is under consideration.

The plea filed under Article 32 of the Constitution through Advocate-on-Record Mukesh Kumar Singh prayed for the removal of the protesters who have been obstructing arterial roads and highways connecting Delhi with states like Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan. The plea argued that these protests have caused great difficulties for the general public, impacting their livelihoods, health emergencies, educational activities, and other essential tasks.

Furthermore, it also expressed concern that such protests have become a recurring issue, holding the common people hostage to what he termed illegal intransigence by farmers. The petition contended that the protests are a direct assault on the rule of law, which is the foundation of Indian democracy.

Mentioning legal precedents and court decisions regarding the right to protest in public spaces, the petitioner stressed that there is no absolute right to hold such protests and it is subject to reasonable restrictions. 

Beside an injunction against protesting farmers, the petitioner also sought comprehensive and exhaustive guidelines relating to restrictions on such protests and agitations that lead to obstruction of public places.

The top court’s refusal to entertain the plea comes as thousands of farmers have resumed their march to the national capital amidst heavy barricading and intensifying police presence, in an attempt to push the government to meet their demands. 

Crime Today News | Judiciary

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