‘Fear of violence not unfounded’: Supreme Court red-flags BJP rath yatra in Bengal

Bengal,BJP,rath yatra

The BJP’s plan to hold a rath yatra in West Bengal suffered a setback on Tuesday with the Supreme Court refusing to interfere with the Mamata Banerjee government’s decision to ban it.

A Supreme Court bench led by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi said that apprehension of violence by the state government was not unfounded.

The court told the BJP to seek fresh approval from authorities and asked the Trinamool Congress government in the state to decide on BJP’s application keeping in mind the fundamental right of speech and expression.

The apex court was hearing a petition of the BJP challenging an order of the division bench of the Calcutta High Court, which had set aside a ruling of a single-judge bench allowing the procession.

In its last hearing, a bench of justices LN Rao and Sanjay Kishan Kaul asked the Mamata Banerjee-led government to respond to the petition.The state government has said that allowing the rally could invite law and order problems.

In its plea, the BJP has contended that authorities cannot abridge their right and they have a duty to facilitate them in exercising their democratic right.

The BJP also offered to submit a revised plan for its ‘Save Democracy Rally’ and the apex court asked the Bengal government to give its view on the new schedule.

The BJP rally planned to cover 42 parliamentary constituencies in Bengal ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

As per the original schedule, BJP president Amit Shah was to launch the yatra from Cooch Behar on December 7, Kakdwip in South 24 Parganas on December 9 and from Tarapith temple in Birbhum on December 14.


Better To Reject Loan Than Running After Defaulters: Madras High Court

Better To Reject Loan Than Running After Defaulters: Madras High Court

Madras HC said banks were giving loans “under various political pressures”. (File)

Chennai: In significant observations amid bank fraud cases rocking the country, the Madras High Court yesterday said banks were giving loans to several persons “under various political pressures” and those who default on repaying them flee from the country.

Justice S Vaidyanathan made the observation in his order rejecting a petition by an aspiring nursing student seeking a direction to the State Bank of India for sanctioning her an education loan after the bank denied it on the ground that her father was a defaulter.

Noting that whether the amount was small or huge, it needed to be recovered from the defaulters, the judge said in this case the SBI was right in rejecting the petitioner’s loan application.

“Banks/Financial Institutions are giving loan to several persons under various political pressures and ultimately public money is being misappropriated and defaulters flee from the country. Innocent employees, who are forced to sign the loan grant are ultimately taken to task,” he said in the order.

“Rather than running behind the defaulters, a loan can better be rejected at the threshold by identifying a person’s credentials. In this case, the bank has rightly done so, as the petitioner’s father has defaulted in paying several loans,” Justice Vaidyanathan said.

The judge’s observations come at a time when the country has been rocked by the Rs. 13,000 crore Punjab National Bank fraud allegedly involving diamantaire Nirav Modi and the alleged default by liquour baron Vijay Mallya in paying loan of over Rs. 9,000 crore to various banks.

Petitioner submitted she belonged to a downtrodden community and had approached the SBI for an educational loan of Rs. 3.40 lakh for pursuing BSC Nursing course.

The bank insisted that she bring the income certificate, identity card, address proof and other relevant documents for obtaining the loan.

Though an application, along with relevant documents, was submitted, the bank refused to grant loan, saying the course does not come under Indian Banks Association’s (IBA) educational loan scheme and also that her father was a defaulter.

The bank submitted that the several suits for recovery of loan amounts were pending against the petitioner’s father.