Shaheen Bagh Demolition: SC dismisses CPIM’s plea; ‘Cannot pass order for political party’

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The parties that stopped the demolition drive in Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh have suffered a major setback. In fact, the Supreme Court on Monday refused to entertain a petition against the civic body’s bulldozer action. A bench headed by Justice N Nageswara Rao came down heavily on the Communist Party for politicizing the matter and advised it to approach the High Court instead.

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Congress workers at Shaheen Bagh today witnessed high voltage drama to prevent bulldozers from demolishing illegal establishments in the area. The CPI(M), led by party leader Brinda Karat, approached the Supreme Court seeking a stay on the demolition. However, the Supreme Court expressed displeasure over the political spin on the issue and said that it cannot hear a petition filed at the behest of political parties.

“Why is the CPI(M) filing a petition (against the demolition)? We can understand whether an aggrieved party files it or not,” Justice Rao said. “If you are representing someone, we will issue the order according to the appropriate forum. We cannot pass an order for any political party.”

The bench ordered, “If the hawkers are encroaching, they will be removed. If they are violating the law, then go to the High Court. Not at the behest of political parties. This is not a forum.”

‘Stop insulting the High Court’

Justice Rao also slammed the CPI(M) for claiming that the high court would refuse to hear its plea regarding the anti-encroachment drive. The bench asked “How can you say that the High Court will not take up the petition? Which bench has refused? How are you saying this, you are insulting the High Court?”

“It is not right to file a petition like this. You spent the whole day here and you could have gone to the High Court instead. It is too much that some side is coming to us and telling us that the HC will not hear.”

After being pulled up by the top court, the CPI(M) withdrew its petition and sought filing of the petition in the High Court. The party has sought two days’ time to file a fresh petition and urged the bench to stay the demolition till then.

The South Delhi Municipal Corporation has prepared a 10-day action plan to remove encroachments from many areas including Shaheen Bagh. Last month, Delhi Municipal Corporation officials were targeted by civil rights groups and opposition parties in an anti-encroachment drive after they were bulldozed in Jahangirpuri area. It was stopped after the intervention of the Supreme Court.

Also read- BJP took a jibe at Shaheen Bagh anti-encroachment campaign, said- ‘Congress is doing vote bank politics’


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