New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday pulled up former IAS officer and activist Harsh Mander, refusing to hear today his petition in connection with the Delhi violence, after a video of a ‘provocative’ speech he gave in December surfaced and went viral on social media. Also Read - Supreme Court to Hear Plea Seeking Hate Speech FIRs Against BJP Leaders Today
Mander is one of the petitioners seeking FIRs against various BJP leaders for their ‘hate speeches,’ which, it is alleged, triggered riots in the national capital. He had moved the top court after the Delhi High Court adjourned the hearing in the case to April 13.
Today, however, Solicitor-General Tushar Mehta, who is representing the Centre, produced before the CJI-led three-judge bench, a video of the speech, remarking that Mander ‘can be seen calling people to streets for real justice.’
Besides CJI SA Bobde, the bench comprises Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant.
Pulling up Mander, CJI Bobde observed, “If this is how he feels about the courts, then it will have to be decided first whether he should be given a hearing at all.”
In the video, which is from December, Mander is seen addressing a gathering outside gate number seven of the Jamia Millia Islamia University. “This fight shall not be won in the Supreme Court as well. In recent times, we have seen the Supreme Court in cases like NRC, Kashmir, Ayodhya. The court didn’t protect humanity, equality and secularism,” Mander is seen saying in the clip.
“We will definitely try our best there. But, the decision will not be made either in Supreme court or Parliament, it has to be made at the streets,” he adds to huge applause from the gathering.
The original petition was filed by 10 victims of the violence.
Apart from seeking FIRs against BJP leaders, the petition demands an SIT with officers from outside Delhi to investigate the violence and a probe by an inquiry committee headed by a retired judge to look at the police’s role in the clashes.
They have also demanded that the Army be deployed to maintain law and order in the affected areas of northeast Delhi.