Supreme Court refuses to hear Bengal rath-yatra case urgently, BJP rallies will have to wait

Unable to hold its “Save Democracy” rallies – also being called the rath-yatras – the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) today moved the Supreme Court against an order of the Calcutta High Court, seeking an urgent hearing of its special leave petition.

However, the plea for an urgent hearing today was declined. The court being closed for winter holidays, said the matter would be taken up in the normal course.

The party’s rath-yatras were to be flagged off from three different locations of West Bengal in the first week of December. The party has alleged that the Bengal government did not respond to its repeated appeals to hold discussions on the planned routes nor gave them clearance to organise the rallies.

The party’s national president Amit Shah was to have flagged off all the rallies and the concluding massive meeting was to be organised in Kolkata in January, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi was to be the main speaker. The West Bengal administration however denied the party clearance for the rallies saying there was apprehension of law and order problem, and of “breach of peace” and “communal violence”.

With the state’s denial, the BJP moved Calcutta High Court where it received the go-ahead from a single-judge bench of Justice Tapabrata Chakraborty. However, the West Bengal government appealed against the order before a division bench comprising Chief Justice Debashis Kargupta and Justice Shampa Sarkar.

The division bench sent the case back to the single bench with the instruction that the intelligence inputs submitted by the government be studied before the verdict is announced.

Now, with a major set-back to its original plan of organising the rath-yatras criss-crossing 42 Lok Sabha constituencies, the party is now desperately trying to find a way out. And with the apex court refusing to hear the case urgently, there is no other option before the party, but to wait.

Comments are closed.