Petition in Punjab & Haryana HC Against Govt’s Actions Hindering Farmer’s Protests

Farmers Protest

A petition has been filed in the Punjab and Haryana High Court challenging the “obstructive actions” of both the Central and State governments, which includes the sealing of the border between Haryana and Punjab aimed at “preventing farmers from exercising their constitutional right to assemble and protest peacefully.”

The plea also raises concerns about the suspension of mobile internet services and bulk SMS in several districts of Haryana, including Ambala, Kurukshetra, Kaithal, Jind, Hisar, Fatehabad, and Sirsa, arguing that such measures “further exacerbate the situation, depriving citizens of their right to information and communication.”

The farmers are advocating for the enactment of a law guaranteeing a minimum support price for crops among other demands.

Uday Pratap Singh, a lawyer based in Chandigarh, has initiated the move in the High Court seeking an urgent interim order to halt all “obstructive actions” against the farmers’ protests.

“The arbitrary and illegal non-payment of Minimum Support Price has sparked a deep sense of discontentment and betrayal among the hardworking farmers of the state. This unjust decision has inflicted trauma upon the impoverished farming community. Despite the farmers’ pleas for the government to honor their rightful demand for at least the minimum support price (MSP) for their produce, the authorities have turned a deaf ear to their concerns,” the petition states.

It is alleged that the State’s actions violate the fundamental rights of citizens to move freely under Article 19 of the Constitution and prohibit peaceful assembly. Pratap also seeks an independent inquiry into alleged arbitrary actions, including police intimidation and the installation of obstacles.

“In a country guided by the rule of law, actions taken by law enforcement authorities should be consistent with legal standards and respect fundamental rights and freedoms. Implementing obstacles such as layers of nails, reinforced concrete walls, electrification, and barbed wire fences may undermine the foundations of a democratic society governed by the rule of law, where respect for human rights and legal principles should prevail,” the plea adds.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte