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Delhi High Court asks Centre for guidelines on security to citizens’ threat complaints

The Delhi High Court was hearing a plea by Aam Aadmi Party leader Ashish Khetan alleging death threat from right-wing outfits

By: PTI | New Delhi |
December 12, 2017 7:32:21 pm
Delhi High Court on citizen' safety The Delhi High Court asked the Centre to reply on the issue in four weeks and listed the matter on January 25 (Express photo)

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday asked the Centre to place before it the guidelines regarding provisions of security to a person apprehending threat to his life.

A bench of acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar allowed the submission of Centre’s standing counsel Sanjeev Narula seeking time to place before the court orders of the Home Ministry in this regard. The court was hearing a plea by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Ashish Khetan alleging death threat from right-wing outfits.

The Centre’s counsel told the court that they were working on it. The court asked the Centre to reply on the issue in four weeks and listed the matter on January 25. Earlier too, the court had asked the Centre to place before it the guidelines and procedures adopted when a citizen complains of having received threats to his life.

During the hearing, Delhi Police counsel Gautam Narayan told the bench that the personal security officer provided to Khetan would not be made available to him round the clock. Earlier, Khetan’s counsel had claimed that the PSO stayed with him from 8 am to 8 pm only and took off on Sundays.

Khetan has also sought framing of guidelines to be adopted by the probe agencies to deal with such complaints. The Supreme Court had earlier refused to interfere in the matter and transferred the plea to the HC. The AAP leader’s counsel had said neither the police, nor its chief had responded to his complaint despite Khetan holding the rank of a Cabinet minister. Nobody has given him a hearing, he had said.

“All I am asking is that these threats should be investigated. Such threats are coming due to the atmosphere nowadays,” the petition has said. Khetan had moved the apex court on May 24 and sought protection alleging threats. He had said that on May 9, he had received a threat letter written in Hindi at his office stating that his death was imminent.

“The language and content of this letter is similar to the threatening article published by Sanatan Prabhat against Narendra Dabholkar, both before and after he was killed. The threat is a chilling reminder of the growing confidence of the anti-national and fascist forces who want to exterminate all dissenting voices,” the plea has alleged.

Khetan, who is the vice-chairman of the Dialogue and Development Commission of Delhi, had sought a ban on right-wing organisation, Sanatan Sanstha, and a CBI probe monitored by the court into the alleged death threat.

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