UP 'name-and-shame' banners: HC reserves order

PRAYAGRAJ: The Allahabad high court on Sunday reserved its order in a matter related to the ‘name-and-shame’ hoardings, carrying names, addresses, and photos of 57 persons who had been served recovery notices for allegedly vandalizing public and private properties during the anti-CAA protests on December 19.
The court will deliver its judgment on Monday.
The high court had taken suo motu cognizance of the hoardings on Saturday and had asked the Lucknow division commissioner and Lucknow DM to explain before it under which law such hoardings had been put on the streets of the state capital.
After hearing the arguments from the advocate general on Sunday, a division bench comprising chief justice Govind Mathur and justice Ramesh Sinha said the order would be delivered at 2 pm on March 9.
Appearing on behalf of the state government, advocate general Raghvendra Pratap Singh contended that the court should not entertain public interest litigations in such matters. He further elaborated that the court should not take cognizance of an act which has been committed by those persons who have damaged public and private property.
He termed the act of the state government to put up the posters of alleged anti-CAA protesters a ‘deterrent’ so that such acts are not repeated in the future.
On Sunday, when the court took up the matter at 10 am, additional advocate general Neeraj Tripathi informed that advocate general Raghvendra Pratap Singh would represent the state government. Hence, the court directed to hear the case at 3 pm. Appearing before the court in the afternoon, the advocate general apprised it about the stand of the state government after which the order was reserved.
The Lucknow administration had put up these hoardings on Thursday night. The hoardings contained the names, addresses, and pictures of 57 people who had earlier been served Rs 1.55 crore recovery notices.
Retired IPS officer SR Darapuri, Congress worker and social activist Sadaf Jafar and the son of prominent Shia cleric Kalbe Sadiq were among 57 ‘accused’ featured on these hoardings.
On Friday, while the accused persons and other social activists flayed the district administration for revealing their identities and said that they had been exposed to threats, including mob lynching, the district administration claimed that the step taken was as per the law.
More than 20 persons died in the state-wide protests against the CAA on December 19 and 20. The state government later served notices on the ‘identified accused’ to recover the damages done during the violence triggered by the protest.

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