Tribune News Service
New Delhi, January 18
Noting that its intervention to resolve the deadlock over farmers’ protests against agricultural laws had been misunderstood, the Supreme Court today said it was for the Delhi Police to decide if the tractor rally proposed on Republic Day should be allowed to enter the national Capital.
“Our intervention has been misunderstood… Who will come in the city and who will be allowed will not be seen by us,” a Bench headed by CJI SA Bobde said, terming the proposed tractor rally a “law and order” issue.
“You are at liberty to invoke all powers under the law,” the CJI, who earlier maintained that farmers had a fundamental right to protest peacefully, told Attorney General KK Venugopal while hearing the Delhi Police plea to stop the rally. The matter will now be taken up on Wednesday when the farmers and the Centre hold the next round of negotiations. The talks, earlier slated for Tuesday, have been deferred by a day.
As Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said there were issues to be addressed, the court said it was for the Delhi Police to decide whether to allow farmers to enter Delhi and if allowed, how many could enter and on what conditions.
The Delhi Police were the first authority to decide it and not the Supreme Court, clarified the CJI. The top court, which stayed implementation of the three farm laws on January 12, said, “We said this last time that entry to Delhi has to be seen by the Delhi Police. Invoke all your powers to see whether farmers can be allowed in the city.”
Pointing out that such a rally could cause law and order problems and prove to be embarrassing for the nation, the police had sought an injunction against the march.
As the Attorney General said “this is an extraordinary situation,” the CJI shot back, “But why do you want us to tell what powers you have?”
Morcha forgives as Charuni clarifies
Sonepat: BKU (Haryana) chief Gurnam Singh Charuni on Monday appeared before a six-member Sanyukt Kisan Morcha panel and gave an undertaking that he won’t share stage with any politician till the farmers’ stir was over. Charuni clarified his Sunday’s meeting with Opposition leaders in Delhi was in his “personal capacity”. The event had triggered talk of chinks in the farmers’ camp. After hearing Charuni, the Morcha decided to close the matter. TNS
Police team at Singhu, seeks rally details
A Delhi Police team led by Joint Commissioner PS Yadav reached the protesting farmers’ ‘kisan andolan office’ at Singhu border on Monday evening and held a meeting with the union leaders. The police sought details about the proposed January 26 tractor rally in New Delhi.