Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) President Adish Aggarwala penned a letter to Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud on Tuesday, urging him to take suo motu action against errant farmers for attempting to forcibly enter Delhi, aiming to disrupt citizens’ daily lives. He also implored CJI Chandrachud to direct courts not to issue adverse orders due to lawyers’ absence.
“I feel compelled to bring to your attention that despite the Government of India’s earnest efforts to safeguard farmers’ interests, some farmers are en route to Delhi from Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, and Punjab, preparing for a large-scale protest in the national capital on February 13,” stated Adish Aggarwala in the letter.
“Previously, in 2021 and 2022, three Delhi borders with neighboring states remained blocked for several months due to similar protests, causing hardship to the general public. It’s on record that many individuals lost their lives while attempting to reach Delhi hospitals for medical treatment due to road blockades,” the letter underscored.
“With today’s farmers’ protest, Delhi, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh Police have heightened security at the Singhu, Ghazipur, and Tikri borders, deploying nails and road barricades to deter protester vehicles from entering Delhi. Furthermore, cranes and earthmovers are being utilized to place large containers on roads, hindering their passage into the Union Capital,” it added.
Last night, three Union Ministers convened a meeting with farmers in Chandigarh, where they announced that a consensus was largely reached on most issues and a committee formation was proposed to address remaining concerns, the letter further noted. “We remain optimistic that farmer representatives will engage in dialogue. We will strive to resolve these matters in the days ahead,” the Government stated.
The letter also suggested political motivations behind the current protest, particularly in light of the upcoming parliamentary elections. “Even if the farmers have legitimate demands, they do not have the right to inconvenience the general public. This is a crucial moment for the Hon’ble Supreme Court to take suo motu action and ensure these farmers do not disrupt public life,” it emphasized.
“Their right to protest should not infringe upon the common citizens’ right to lead uninterrupted lives,” the letter insisted. “If they persist with their protest, they should do so in their respective regions.”
“In these circumstances, our lawyers, not only those practicing in the Supreme Court but also in the Delhi High Court, various Commissions and Tribunals, and the District Courts, will face significant challenges attending court proceedings,” Aggarwala highlighted.
“I urge Your Lordship to issue necessary instructions to refrain from passing adverse orders due to lawyers’ non-appearance in matters listed before the aforementioned courts until obstacles on Delhi borders due to the farmers’ agitation persist,” Aggarwala requested in the letter.
“I further request Your Lordship to take suo motu action against the errant farmers for their attempts to forcibly enter Delhi and disrupt citizens’ daily lives,” Aggarwala concluded.
Farmers are protesting over their demands, including the “MSP guarantee law” and debt waiver.