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Bombay High Court: "Peaceful Protesters Not Traitors,Anti-Nationals"
The Aurangabad bench of the Bombay High Court has said that "People who are protesting peacefully against one law cannot be called "traitors" or "anti-national".
Bombay High Court: "Peaceful Protesters Not Traitors, Anti-Nationals"
New Delhi: The Aurangabad bench of the Bombay High Court has said that "People who are protesting peacefully against one law cannot be called "traitors" or "anti-national".The high court's order came on a plea by Maharashtra resident Iftekhar Shaikh, who asked the court to allow him and others to sit on a protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) in Maharashtra's Beed district.
"The submissions made show that there will be no question of disobedience of provisions of CAA by such agitation. Thus, this court is expected to consider the right of such persons to start agitation in a peaceful way. This court wants to express that such persons cannot be called traitors, anti-nationals only because they want to oppose one law. It will be an act of protest and only against the government for the reason of CAA," a division bench of Justices TV Nalavade and MG Sewlikar said on Thursday.
A district magistrate and the police had refused permission to Mr. Shaikh, 45, to hold the protest.
India got freedom due to agitations which were non-violent and this path of non-violence is followed by the people of this country till this date. We are fortunate that most of the people of this country still believe in non-violence. In the present matter also the petitioners and companions want to agitate peacefully to show their protest," the court said in the order.
"The courts are bound to see whether these persons have the right to agitate, oppose the law. If the court finds that it is part of their fundamental right, it is not open to the court to ascertain whether the exercise of such right will create law and order problems. That is the problem of a political government. In such cases, it is the duty of the government to approach such persons, have talked with them and try to convince them," Justices TV Nalavade and MG Sewlikar said in the order, and ruled that the order by the magistrate and the police was illegal.
We must keep in mind that we are a democratic republic country and our Constitution has given us the rule of law and not rule of the majority. When such an act (CAA) is made, some people may be of a particular religion like Muslims may feel that it is against their interest and such an act needs to be opposed.
It is a matter of their perception and belief and the court cannot go into the merits of that perception or belief.
The process of giving citizenship to persecuted non-Muslim minorities from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. Critics say the law discriminates against Muslims, while the government maintains it doesn't affect Indian citizens.
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