HC orders kisan unions to take permission for Patiala dharna. Punjab and Haryana High Court has directed various kisan unions who are proposing to hold a dharna at Patiala from September 22 to seek prior permission for the same from the Deputy Commissioner or else their gathering ‘would not satisfy the test of being legal.’ It has also directed the state government to ensure strict enforcement of Sec 144 Cr PC. A division bench of the High Court, comprising Justices Ajay Kumar Mittal and Amit Rawal, on Wednesday also directed Punjab Advocate General Atul Nanda to apprise the court on Thursday regarding the steps being taken by the state government to ensure that there is ‘no free entry to the Patiala city’ and on how the same was being regulated.According to a government spokesperson, the High Court orders came on a Public Interest Litigation filed by a Patiala-based lawyer Mohit Kapoor, who, in his petition, said that the proposed dharna was illegal and would cause immense problems to the residents, besides creating a law and order situation.Various kisan organisations, including BKU (Ugrahan), BKU (Dakonda), BKU Krantikari (Phool Group), BKU Krantikari (Shinder Group), Kirti Kisan Union, Kisan Sangharsh Committee (Pannu Group) and Ajad Sangharsh Committee, were the respondents to the petition, besides the state and Union government.Nanda informed the court that Deputy Commissioner Patiala had passed orders for imposition of Section 144 Cr PC, whereby the assembly of five or more persons within the area of Patiala city has been prohibited. He told the court that the said orders had been advertised through public notices in various newspapers, making it mandatory to seek prior approval of the DC for holding any protest/agitation. Nanda told the court that no organisation had so far sought permission for holding any protest in Patiala.
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