SC Suo Moto on Shaheen Bagh Infant's Death: Why SC Didn't Bother about Killing of 20 Peaceful Protesters in UP, Asks Prashant Bhushan
NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 08— After the Supreme Court on Friday took suo moto cognizance of involvement of children in anti-CAA protests in the wake of death of an infant in Shaheen Bagh, senior lawyer Prashant Bhushan has asked why the top court did not bother about killing of over 20 peaceful protesters in police firing in Uttar Pradesh and police battering of students at Jamia Millia Islamia and Aligarh Muslim University.
The apex court has taken suo moto cognizance of the involvement of children and infants in demonstrations and agitations against Citizenship Amendment Act in view of the death of a four-month old infant on January 30 at Shaheen Bagh in Delhi. The court took the cognizance following a letter written by a student to Chief Justice SA Bobde, urging the apex court’s intervention on the issue. In her complaint, the seventh-grader urged the top court to frame guidelines to disallow children and infants from participating in protests and agitations, while directing police and appropriate authorities to investigate the death of the infant. The matter is listed before the bench on February 10.
Couple of petitions have already been filed in SC against the Shaheen Bagh protest which has been going on since December 15 on the Delhi-Noida highway near Kalindi Kunj in South Delhi. A petition has been filed by BJP leader Dr. Nand Kishore Garg, seeking directions to the Centre, Delhi Government as well as the Commissioner of Delhi Police, for laying down of comprehensive guidelines for regulating protests that lead to obstruction of public places. Siting the Shaheen Bagh protest, the petitioner implored the top court to restrain itself from being a silent spectator and to intervene.
Commenting on the Supreme Court’s suo moto on the death of the infant at Shaheen Bagh, renowned human rights lawyer Prashant Bhushan tweeted: “Amazing that SC does not bother about more than 20 people killed by police firing on peaceful protestors, masked goons beating up students at JNU, abetted by police, police battering students at Jamia & AMU, but takes suo moto notice of infant's death at Shaheen!”
Supreme Court lawyer Prashant Bhushan was referring to the killing of 23 people on December 19-20, mostly in police firing, after anti-CAA protests in various districts of Uttar Pradesh. On December 15, the police had resorted to excessive use of force against the protesters at Jamia Millia Islamia in Delhi and Aligarh Muslim University in Aligarh. On January 5, some masked goons, many of them were later identified as members of ABVP, brutally assaulted students and teachers at JNU in Delhi. Since CAA was passed by the Parliament on December 11, there have been massive nationwide protests. Since Dec 15, thousands of people, mostly women, have been holding round-the-clock sit-in against CAA-NRC-NPR at Shaheen Bagh