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Can’t be blocked perpetually: Supreme Court asks Centre for steps taken to clear roads blocked by farmers


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Can’t be blocked perpetually: Supreme Court asks Centre for steps taken to clear roads blocked by farmers

The Supreme Court on Thursday emphasized that roads cannot remain blocked perpetually and asked the Centre what steps has it taken to remove the road blockade by farmers, protesting against three agriculture laws at Delhi borders. A bench headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul told the Centre’s counsel: “We have already laid down the law and you have to implement it. If we encroach, then you may say that we have trespassed on your domain.”

The bench further added, “How to implement the law is your business. The court has no means to implement it”.

The top court said there are grievances, which need to be addressed and queried, “How can highways be blocked perpetually? Where does it end”. The bench emphasised the problem could be solved through either judicial forum or parliamentary debates, but highways can’t be blocked perpetually.

The bench asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and Additional Solicitor General K.M. Nataraj: What was the government doing in the matter?

Mehta, on his part, submitted that a high-level committee was formed where farmers were invited, but they refused to join. He added that certain farmers’ representatives have to be made parties in the matter, so that they are informed about the government plans. However, the bench said the Centre will have to implead them as parties, as the petitioner may not know about the leaders representing the farmers.

The top court was hearing a plea filed by Monicca Agarwaal seeking directions to remove road blockades, which impedes the free movement of traffic between Delhi and Noida.

The bench told the Centre’s counsel to move an application, pointing out steps taken and how impleadment of some parties will help in resolution of dispute. The top court has posted the matter for further hearing on October 4.

The top court on August 23 had asked the Centre to find a solution to the blockade of roads by farmers groups protesting against the three agriculture laws. Earlier, the top court had observed that protesters have a right to protest at a designated space, but can’t block public roads.

The petitioner had alleged that instead of the normal 20 minutes, she ended up spending two hours for her travel from Noida to Delhi.

ALSO READ: Farmers protest: Unions trying to test Govt’s patience by direct confrontation?

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