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Meeting permission denied, Gujarat farmers’ body questions if COVID threat not applicable to ruling BJP

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The Gujarat Khedut Samaj on Wednesday submitted before the Gujarat High Court whether the COVID pandemic did not apply to the BJP in the state.

The submission came in connection with a petition filed by the farmers’ body challenging the order of the Surat Police Commissioner refusing it permission for a meeting,

Counsel for the Gujarat Khedut Samaj submitted before the court said that Surat Police’s decision not to permit farmers to conduct the meeting is fatally discriminatory.

He observed that the ruling BJP headed by its president CR Patil gets permission now and then to hold meeting/s to express support in favour of the three farmers’ legislations.

He said in every such meeting of the BJP COVID-19 guidelines are being consciously violated and yet no action is taken.

The counsel further observed that on the other hand the petitioner organization, which wants to hold a meeting well within the COVID 19 guidelines and has even filed an affidavit promising the same, is denied permission.

“Corona pandemic does not apply to BJP, the political party in power, as is evident from the number of permissions being given to the political party,” the counsel argued.

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The counsel further argued that this is malafide in law because the permission is denied not because of COVID but is being done consciously, deliberately, and wilfully by the statutory authority.

Gujarat Khedut Samaj further sought to hold another meeting on January 16 or 17 in its office premises in Surat. Gujarat Khedut Samaj submitted that it will follow all COVID-19 guidelines.

Hemant Shah, an economist, Supreme Court advocate Prashant Bhushan, and advocate Anand Yagnik will address the farmers in the meeting.

What is the farmers’ petition?

The petition filed by the Gujarat Khedut Samaj said they were denied permission to hold a meeting on January 3 despite assurance to the police authorities that they would follow COVID19 safety protocols.

This, the petition said, was in complete violation of Article 19 of the Constitution. The petitioner has sought to quash the order of the police commissioner

It further said that according to the Bombay Police Act 1951, permission to hold a meeting can only be denied after hearing the other party, which is not done in this case, the petition claimed.

The farmer’s body – Gujarat Khedut Samaj had sought permission to hold a meeting on its premises on December 25 last year which was rejected by police on January 1, 2021.

 

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