HC dismisses petition on protests in Delhi

The PIL filed by a social activist Abhishek Jain had elaborated the difficulties caused by rallies and dharnas.

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday dismissed a petition that accused the government and its agencies of adopting a pick-and-choose policy in allowing dharnas and protests in the heart of Delhi including the on-going fast at Ramlila ground by Anna Hazare.

The PIL had sought a direction for demarcation of a place on the outskirt of the national capital for holding such protests and rallies to maintain hassle-free traffic in the metropolis.

The High Court, which said, the petition was unclear about the relief sought.

"The pleadings, assertions, asseverations and the prayer sought in a writ petition, especially in a public interest litigation has to be clear, manifest, purposefully demonstrable and luculent making out a case that is relevant to public interest," a bench of chief justice Dipak Misra and justice Sanjiv Khanna said.

It said "the petitioner, who has preferred this public interest litigation, is embedded to play with words and usher in a sense of contradiction, irreconcilability and dichotomy.

One may, in a different sphere of life, pronounce with heroics that he contradicts himself every moment and, therefore, he grows but, a significant one, the same has no allowance in the field of law."

"On one hand, a collective grievance is agitated keeping in view the basic conception enshrined under Article 21 of the Constitution of India and on the other hand, the inequality shown to various groups to carry out demonstrations under the anvil of Article 14 of the Constitution of India has been pyramided," the bench said.

The PIL filed by a social activist Abhishek Jain through advocate Sugriv Dubey had elaborated the difficulties caused by rallies and dharnas and had pointed out that the authorities were adopting pick-and-choose policy in allowing such agitations in prime localities like Jantar Mantar, Ramlila Maidan, Parliament Street and Raj Ghat.

"It is understandable that a person files a litigation of the present nature for protection of the collective so that their fundamental rights are not affected but, when the pleadings are in a maze, the purpose is lost, the concentration gets unfocused, a sense of puzzlement reigns and anarchy prevails," the bench said.

"We say with certitude that filing of this kind of public interest litigation deserves to be discouraged. A person while filing a PIL describing himself as pro-bono should not conceive the idea of experimentation because the law does not permit that a litigant should come to court thinking it is a laboratory or playgrounds, where children come to play. The experimentation of any nature has to be kept at bay," the
court added.


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