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Apex court to examine non-compliance of guidelines on strikes

The Supreme Court on Friday decided to examine alleged non-implementation and non-compliance of its guidelines on the issue of strikes and dharnas by political parties and others which have in many cases resulted in destruction of public and private property.

A bench of justices P Sathasivam and JS Khehar issued notices to the central government and all state governments and sought their responses on the allegation that the apex court guidelines issued in this regard in 2007 and 2009 have not been implemented.

The bench, while granting them eight weeks time, also directed them to file status reports explaining as to the steps they have taken to implement the guidelines issued by the court and to prevent destruction of public and private property during demonstrations and ‘hartals’.

The court passed the direction on a PIL filed by advocate Koshy Jacob who gave instances of such bandhs or hartals declared by political parties in Kerala.

While agreeing to examine, the court asked Jacob’s counsel and senior advocate MN Krishnamani to give information regarding such bandh or hartal from other states in the next hearing.

The counsel told the court that they had sought the information under Right to Information Act from other states but they were not given the material. The PIL submitted that there were wilful and deliberate omission on the parts of the authorities to comply with the 16 April, 2009 guidelines passed by the apex court in a matter relating to destruction of public and private properties.

The PIL alleged that if a bandh or hartal was declared by a political party in power, the state government remained mute spectators in disregarding the judgements and guidelines of the apex court, which results in destruction of private and public property in large cases.
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