BJP goes SC against Bengal’s ban on rallies

The BJP approached the Supreme Court today against an order of the Calcutta High Court that told the party to defer its “Save Democracy” yatras in West Bengal. The party has sought an urgent hearing of its special leave petition.

Keeping in view of forthcoming Lok Sabha polls, the BJP had planned to launch “Save Democracy” yatras from three different locations in the state, covering all assembly segments in the state,  crisscrossing it before converging in Kolkata.

BJP president Amit Shah was supposed to flag them off.  However, Mamata Banarjee government had earlier denied permission for these rallies, saying it would lead to law and order problems, besides communal tensions in the state.

Though BJP succeeded in getting nod from single bench of Kolkatta High Court, it was later deferred by division bench. BJP earlier received the green signal from a single-judge bench of the same court on Thursday.

Justice Tapabrata Chakraborty said that the court failed to see the reasoning behind the state government’s argument and instead asked it to ensure that no breach of law-and-order occurs during the event. A jubilant BJP welcomed the verdict, and Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley took to social media to congratulate the Bengal party leadership.

But, later a division bench comprising Chief Justice Debasish Kargupta and Justice Shampa Sarkar, found the next day that Justice Tapabrata Chakraborty had not taken inputs from state intelligence agencies into account, and sent the case back with instructions that it study all the material submitted before arriving at a verdict.

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