Supreme Court hauls up UP govt for attempting to ‘name and shame’ anti-CAA protesters

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on March 12, 2020

Can the state go beyond bringing wrongdoers to book, SC asks state on hoardings with personal details of protesters

The Supreme Court on Thursday questioned the Uttar Pradesh government for putting on display the personal details of anti-citizenship law protesters to “name and shame” them. The Justice U.U. Lalit led-three-judge bench asked the UP government: "The wrong-doer must be brought to book. But can the state go beyond that?"

The Yogi Adityanath-led Bharatiya Janata Party government in the state had moved the Supreme Court after the Allahabad High Court asked the government to immediately remove the hoarding on Monday.

The Allahabad High Court, in its verdict, had also cited the Right to Privacy as a fundamental human right recognised by the United Nations as well as the Supreme Court. It said that the government's decision to put the photographs and personal details of the protesters on display along the roadside was "an unwarranted interference in privacy.”

The hoardings displayed the personal details of people, including some prominent faces, who had joined the anti-citizenship protests. The people featured in the hoardings were asked to pay for damage to public property and warned that their properties would be attached if they did not do so, NDTV reported.

The High Court slammed the state government and said: "In the present case, the cause is not about personal injury caused to the persons whose personal details are given in the banner, but the injury caused to the precious constitutional value and its shameless depiction by the administration.

It further added: “The cause as such is the undemocratic functioning of government agencies which are supposed to treat all members of the public with respect and courtesy and at all times should behave in a manner that upholds constitutional and democratic values.”

Published on March 12, 2020

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