Can’t occupy indefinitely, says Supreme Court on Shaheen Bagh
The Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday that the right to protest and express dissent against governments is a fundamental right, but not absolute and also that public places cannot be occupied indefinitely to stage protests and demonstrations. The court also slammed the authorities for failing to disperse protesters who occupied a public space in the city for longer than three months.
The ruling came in the context of the long-running protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, or CAA, in south Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh that started on December 15, 2019,and ended on March 23, not because of police action but the lockdown imposed to fight the coronavirus disease (Covid-19). The stage and other facilities put in place by the protestors were subsequently dismantled by the police.