Lucknow: The Allahabad High Court Sunday reserved its judgment on the issue of the Lucknow administration putting up posters and hoardings targeting those protesting the Citizenship Amendment Act. The court will pronounce its verdict in the case at 2 pm Monday.
The division bench, headed by Chief Justice Govind Mathur, has, however, termed the action as being unjust and an “absolute encroachment on personal liberty of individuals”. It had told the UP advocate general that “good sense should prevail” and that the state must remove the hoardings before 3 pm Sunday and inform the court about it.
The court had Saturday taken suo motu cognisance of the hoardings put up by the Lucknow administration. It had issued a notice to the Lucknow district administrator and divisional police commissioner seeking an explanation on the laws that the administration relied on to put up the hoardings across the city.
Authorities in Lucknow had Friday put up posters and hoardings of those accused of violence during protests against the controversial citizenship law on 19 December. The hoardings contained the names, photographs and addresses of the accused, with a warning that if they did not pay for the damage caused, their properties would be attached.
According to sources, the Lucknow administration was working on the orders of the Yogi Adityanath government.
Prominent names on posters
The posters and hoardings have also created a stir as they include some prominent names including that of social activist and former IPS officer S.R. Darapuri, Congress leader Sadaf Jafar, theatre personality Deepak Kabir, Shia cleric Maulana Saif Abbas and Sibtain Noori, the son of another Shia cleric, Maulana Kalbe Sadiq.
“This government is putting our lives in danger. Our addresses have been disclosed and people are commenting on social media, asking if we’ve paid the fine,” Congress leader Sadaf Jafar told ThePrint. “We have already got bail in these cases. The police had failed to prove that we were involved in vandalism during the anti-CAA protests”
They don’t want any strong voice against the CAA but we will still raise our voices, she added.
“The government is trying to lynch us. They have put out our photos and addresses in public places and now any anti -social elements can come and harm us. This is what this government wants,” retired IPS officer S.R. Darapuri said. “I have already sent a letter to the home secretary and the DGP against these hoardings. This is unlawful. No one can put posters of protestors or even accused without the permission of the courts.”