Become Express Subscriber
Advertisement
Premium

Madras HC says no to protests on Marina Beach

The order said, while recognising the fact that dialogue, dissent and deliberation are necessary in a democracy, other aspects like public order, safety and public interest must also be given equal weightage.

The bench said that the beach cannot be used for such activities as public order is equally important. The bench said that the beach cannot be used for such activities as public order is equally important.

Agreeing with the Tamil Nadu government’s objection to protests on Marina Beach, the Madras High Court on Monday set aside a petition seeking permission to hold a public meeting at Chennai’s popular beach, which had witnessed a massive protest over Jallikattu in 2017.

Allowing an appeal moved by the Tamil Nadu government, a division bench of Justices K K Sasidharan and R Subramanian set aside the order passed by a single judge that directed the Chennai Police to grant permission for protests on Marina Beach.

The single-judge order came on a petition by farmer leader P Ayyakannu to sit on a fast on Marina Beach demanding constitution of the Cauvery Management Board.  Ayyakannu had moved the petition after he was denied permission for a 90-day fast, which was to start last April.

The judge, granting permission on April 28 despite a strong objection from the state, had said: “Had the then British government banned Marina Beach from being used for any public meeting, Marina would not have witnessed the presence of Mahatma Gandhi and Tilakar on its sands for the noble cause of freedom.”

Subscriber Only Stories
Premium
Premium
Premium
Premium

The division bench order had stayed the order of the single judge on an appeal moved by the state. On Monday, the division bench order said it was not a case of the state prohibiting the assembly or demonstrations throughout the city of Chennai.

“The Commissioner of Police has identified certain locations for the purpose of holding processions and meetings. Some of these places are very near to the legislative assembly and Secretariat. Even otherwise, the leaders of the movement after holding the meeting at any of the dedicated places, can meet the Chief Minister or Minister concerned or the appropriate authorities to submit their representations. There is no necessity for a show of strength at Marina for espousing the cause of agriculturists,” it said.

“The executive, empowered with the task of maintaining law and order, has both the right and duty to exercise its discretion, on logical and unbiased parameters to decide upon permitting a particular place to be used as a centre of protest.”

Advertisement

Thus, the order added, while recognising the fact that dialogue, dissent and deliberation are necessary in a democracy, other aspects like public order, safety and public interest must also be given equal weightage. “The State is therefore correct in regulating the assembly at Marina in larger public interest,” the order said.

First published on: 04-09-2018 at 03:32:45 am
Next Story

First Inter-state translocation project: Tiger shifting from Madhya Pradesh to Odisha may have violated SOP

Home
ePaper
Next Story
X