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Prohibitory orders imposed in city illegal, says Karnataka HC

Prohibitory orders imposed in city illegal, says Karnataka HC

Bengaluru: The Karnataka High Court on Thursday held as illegal the city police commissioner's prohibitory orders issued in December last to prevent rights groups from staging demonstrations here against the CAA, NRC and NPR.

Hearing a batch of public interest litigations (PILs), the Principal Bench of Chief Justice Abhay Oka and Justice Hemant Chandangaudar said the orders issued under Section 144 of the CrPC was illegal as it did not satisfy the test of judicial scrutiny demanded of such orders.

The prohibitory orders were issued as various rights groups had decided to stage demonstrations in the city against the Citizenship Amendment Act, National Register for Citizens and National Population Register.

Many prominent persons, including historian Ramachandra Guha, had participated in the protest defying section 144 of the CrPC.

Police detained and released them later, however it drew criticism for its action.

Later, Congress partys Rajya Sabha member professor M V Rajeev Gowda, MLA Soumya Reddy, activist Leo F Saldanha, singer and actor M D Pallavi, activist Kavitha Lankesh, Karnataka unit of Peoples Union for Civil Liberties and professor Ramdas Rao filed the PILs.

The PILs were filed challenging the order of the police commissioner, Bengaluru, on various grounds including that the order suffered from non-application of mind and arbitrarily restricted the freedom of speech and expression of the petitioners as guaranteed in the Constitution of India.

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