The Uttar Pradesh government on Friday told the Supreme Court that it has withdrawn 274 recovery notices given to alleged anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protestors in 2019 for damaging public property, PTI reported.

The notices were issued to the alleged protestors before the enactment of the Uttar Pradesh Recovery of Damages to Public and Private Property Act, 2021, Live Law reported. The law states that protesters found guilty by claims tribunals of damaging government or private properties will face imprisonment of one year or a fine ranging between Rs 5,000 and Rs 1 lakh.

On Friday, the bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and Surya Kant said that the Uttar Pradesh government will refund the entire amount worth crores of rupees recovered from the alleged protestors.

However, the court granted the state government to proceed against the alleged protestors under the new law, PTI reported.

The court has been hearing a plea filed by Uttar Pradesh resident Parwaiz Arif Titu seeking to quash notices given to alleged protestors by the district administration to recover losses caused by damage to public properties.

The plea had alleged that the notices were sent to a person who had died six years ago at the age of 94 and also to two people who are aged above 90.

On February 11, the bench had said that the notices and the action on the alleged protestors were not in accordance with the directions of the Supreme Court given in a 2009 verdict. In the ruling, the court had laid down guidelines to assess damages and make recovery when mass destruction of public property takes place during protests.

When Additional Advocate General Garima Prashad had said that she was following an Allahabad High Court verdict from 2011, the bench had castigated her for bypassing the Supreme Court judgement.

The court on Friday did not accept Prashad’s submission that the protestors and the state government should be allowed to move the claim tribunal instead of directing refunds, PTI reported.