The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) has announced that it will not conduct route marches on November 6 and will to appeal against the judgment of the Madras High Court allowing them to conduct route marches across Tamil Nadu only inside compounded premises.

A Press Release by the RSS stated that "...the ruling given by high court yesterday restricted to conduct the route march only indoors in an auditorium or within four walls of compound. Across India, including places like Jammu and Kashmir, Kerala and West Bengal the route march are held in public roads, the above judgment is not acceptable to us. Hence RSS has decided to go for an appeal against this ruling and will not be holding the route march as planned on Nov 6, 2022."

The Madras High Court had granted permission to the RSS to conduct route marches in 44 places in Tamil Nadu on November 6, 2022 with certain conditions.

The Court had sought the intelligence report which was produced by the State Public Prosecutor in a sealed cover.

On a perusal of the said report, it revealed that the concerned Commissioner of Police/Superintendent of police referred to a number of FIRs registered during the year 2008 to 2020 in the places, where the petitioners sought permission to conduct procession and public meeting and stated that there will be a law and order issue if permission is granted to the respective petitioners to conduct procession and public meeting, the Court noted.

However, the bench of Justice G.K. Ilanthiraiyan held that all the FIRs are very old and the reasons stated in the report cannot be accepted. The Court also held that mere pendency of the FIRs against the particular organization cannot be a ground to reject the request made by the petitioners.

However, the Court found the following places to be very sensitive area- (i) Coimbatore (ii) Pollachi (iii) Nagercoil (iv) Palladam (v) Mettupalayam (vi) Arumanai.

Therefore the Court observed that it is not the right time to permit the respective petitioners to conduct procession and public meetings in the above mentioned places.

However, the Court allowed the petitioners to make fresh representation to conduct procession and public meeting after the period of two months. The Court further directed that on receipt of the same, the authorities concerned should consider the same and pass orders on merits and in accordance with law.

Senior Advocates S. Prabhakaran and N.L. Rajah appeared for the petitioners whereas Additional Public Prosecutor E. Raj Tilak appeared for the State. State Public prosecutor Hasan Mohammed Jinnah appeared for the DGP.

While granting permission to the RSS to conduct procession, the Court also imposed certain conditions.

The Court directed that the procession and public meetings should be conducted in compounded premises such as Ground or Stadium. Further during the program, nobody shall either sing songs or speak ill on any individuals, any caste, religion, etc.

The Court further directed that they should not indulge in any act disturbing the sovereignty and integrity of our country and the program should be conducted without causing any hindrance to public or traffic.

The Court directed the participants to not bring any stick, lathi or weapon that may cause injury to anyone. The Court also added that in the procession, the processionists shall not by any manner offend the sentiments of any religious, linguistics, cultural and other groups.

Cause Title- R.Karthikeyan v. K.Phanindra Reddy, I.A.S. & Ors.

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