RSS permitted to conduct route march, led by a musical procession, and public meetings at all the places it had requested: Supreme Court

RSS permitted to conduct route march, led by a musical procession, and public meetings at all the places it had requested: Supreme Court

On Friday, the Supreme Court' division bench of Justices KM Joseph and Hrishikesh Roy issued an interim order ordering that no coercive action be taken against members of the Federation of Retail Traders Welfare Association for failing to comply with the Maharashtra Government's directive to display the names of shops and establishments in Marathi written in the Devanagri script.

The court also ordered the petitioners to provide a list of their members who will be covered by the interim protection.

The problem stems from the Maharashtra government amending Rule 35 of the Maharashtra Shops and Establishments (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Rules to require Marathi (written in Devanagiri script) signboards for all shops.

The Madras High Court on Friday granted the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) permission to hold a route march on November 6 in forty-four locations across Tamil Nadu, out of the fifty locations for which permission was sought.

After reviewing the sealed cover report, Justice GK Ilanthiraiyan stated today that the procession could take place in 44 locations. The court denied permission for procession in six locations, including Nagercoil, Coimbatore city, Pollachi, Tirupur, Palladam, and Arumani, citing "some materials." The court further stated that "I have gone through the sealed cover report and not found any thing. You (TN police) have mentioned crime numbers of 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012. The DGP had asked the concerned Superintendents of Police to consider prevailing situation and grant or deny permission. What is this? I only found some scattered instances here and there that pertain to recent times. How is any of this connected (to the Coimbatore blast?"

It also gave RSS the authority to approach the State Police with a new representation after two months to hold the event at the six locations listed above.

The court ordered the State Police to instruct all officers not to "precipitate the issue" and to make appropriate security arrangements.

The TN police had previously denied the RSS permission to hold such a march on October 2, citing law and order issues as a result of the ban on the Popular Front of India.

The state had stated on Thursday that permission could only be granted in three of the 50 locations due to the security risks posed by the Coimbatore car blast and the state's current heavy rain conditions.

Case Title: R Karthikeyan v. K Phanindra Reddy IAS

Case No: Contempt Petition No. 2111 of 2022


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