The Supreme Court on Monday declined to list the Bharatiya Janata Party’s petition, which challenged the Calcutta High Court’s decision prohibiting it from holding public rallies in West Bengal, for an urgent hearing during the winter break, ANI reported.
A division bench of the Calcutta High Court on Friday had set aside an earlier judgement by a single bench that allowed the party to hold the rallies, after the state government moved an appeal challenging the single bench’s order. The state government had requested an urgent hearing and had moved the appeal before a division bench of Chief Justice Debasish Kargupta and Justice Shampa Sarkar.
The next day, the BJP had declared that it would move the Supreme Court against the High Court’s decision. The rallies are expected to cover all the 42 Lok Sabha constituencies of the state.
BJP President Amit Shah was initially scheduled to launch a statewide programme at a public rally in Cooch Behar on December 7. The BJP moved the High Court after the state government did not respond to its requests for permission. The court asked the state government and the BJP leadership to discuss the matter, but the government refused permission. The BJP then moved the High Court with a fresh plea.
The Trinamool Congress-led government on December 15 had refused permission citing intelligence reports that purportedly warned of possible communal violence in areas where the party planned to hold the events. The BJP in its petition, however, contended that the state government could not withhold its fundamental right to hold a peaceful rally on the basis of conjectures, Bar and Bench reported.