Tripura BJP files objection against communal violence petition in SCtext_fields
New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in Tripura has filed a strongly-worded objection against a plea filed in the Supreme Court to investigate communal violence that erupted in the state late last year in October. The petitioner was propagating "selective outrage", the objection claimed, requesting the Supreme Court to dismiss the petition.
Questioning the petitioner's "silence" on the violence in Bengal before and after last year's elections, the Tripura government labelled the Public Interest Litigation "selective public interest" and called for a for an "exemplary cost" to be imposed upon the petitioner. The objection asked why the petitioner, Ehtesham Hashmi's mentioned 'public spirit' had not been roused in the case of Bengal but had come to the fore in the case of a small state like Tripura.
The Supreme Court had refused to investigate post-poll violence in Bengal and had directed petitioners in that case to approach the High Court, the Tripura government objection notice argued. It was time the Supreme Court drew a line in the sand to demarcate genuine PIL's from those with only 'selective public interest', it added.
"No individual or group of individuals professionally functioning as 'public spirited persons/groups' can selectively invoke the extra-ordinary jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to achieve some apparent but undisclosed objective. This selective rousing of public interest itself justifies dismissal of the PIL with exemplary cost," the notice says.
The government questioned why a a PIL was being filed when arrests of those involved in instigating the communal violence, arson and looting in October had been arrested. Links to Pakistan's ISI were also being probed, the notice revealed.
"There are several cases related to Tripura before the court. Few lawyers, who went on fact-finding missions, were served with notices. UAPA charges were slapped on journalists. Police did not register a single FIR in the cases of violence. We want all this to be investigated by an independent panel monitored by the court," Ehtesham Hashmi's lawyer had submitted to the court earlier.
The BJP government's notice was issued shortly after the Supreme Court restrained the Tripura police cyber cell from taking action against journalists posting or tweeting about the incident following a petition from journalist Samiullah Shabbir Khan, who had reportedly received a notice from the cyber cell for his tweet alleging that a place of worship was vandalised during the violence.