Stampede During Blanket Distribution| SC Dismisses WB Govt's Plea Against Stay On Registration Of FIR Against Suvendhu Adhikari
The Supreme Court has dismissed the plea of the West Bengal Government seeking the registration of an FIR against BJP leader Suvendhu Adhikhari for the stampede that occurred during a blanket distribution.
The State had approached the Apex Court seeking permission to file an FIR against the BJP Leader in yesterday's stampede that occurred during a free blanket distribution organized by him and resulted in the death of three.
The Bench comprising CJI DY Chandrachudand Justice PS Narasimha has refused to interfere with the decision of the High Court which had issued a blanket stay against registration of FIR against Suvendu Adhikari.
"The petitioner has the remedy of moving the learned Chief Justice of the High Court of Calcutta for appropriate administrative directions", said the Supreme Court.
Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, who represented the State of West Bengal mentioned the matter before the Chief Justice's Court.
The Senior Advocate said that as a result of the blanket stay issued by the Calcutta High Court restraining the registration of an FIR against the Leader of Opposition of the State of West Bengal, the state Police is unable to register an FIR in respect of Asansol stampede. Yesterday, during the incident certain deaths are alleged to have taken place during the course of the distribution of free blankets by the BJP leader.
The BJP Leader, who is also the Leader of the Opposition in the State of West Bengal, had earlier approached the High Court against multiple registrations of FIRs by the Police alleging that there is an attempt to prevent him from performing the function as a people's representative.
This High Court in one of its orders recorded that "there was a scheme and/or design by the ruling dispensation in the State" to deprive the Suvendu Adhikari of his liberty. Thus, the High Court on December 8, 2022, ordered that each and everyone FIRs registered against the BJP Leader shall remain stayed.
"The State police shall not register any more FIRs against the petitioner, without the leave of this Court", further ordered the High Court.
It was argued before the Supreme Court that since the Single Judge is not available for judicial work in Calcutta, the Special Leave Petition had to be instituted before the Apex Court.
The Supreme Court was not convinced with the arguments but allowed withdrawal of the Special Leave Petition at the present stage so as to enable the State of West Bengal to move the Chief Justice of the Calcutta High Court.
"It is clarified that while we have recorded the above submissions, we have not expressed any opinion on the merits of the case" while dismissing the petition as withdrawn.
Cause Title- State of West Bengal v. Suvendu Adhikari & Ors.