The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear pleas challenging the Centre’s decision to block a BBC documentary on the 2002 Gujarat riots.
A bench comprising Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud and justices P S Narasimha and J B Pardiwala took note of the submissions of lawyer M L Sharma and senior advocate C U Singh seeking urgent listing of their separate PILs on the issue.
At the outset of the proceedings, lawyer Sharma, who has filed a PIL in his personal capacity, mentioned the plea, saying that people were being arrested.
”It will be listed on Monday,” the CJI said.
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Senior advocate C U Singh mentioned a separate plea on the issue filed by veteran journalist N Ram and activist lawyer Prashant Bhushan.
He mentioned how the tweets by Ram and Bhushan were deleted allegedly by using emergency powers. He also said that students in Ajmer were rusticated for streaming the BBC documentary. ”We will list,” the CJI said.
Lawyer Sharma filed the PIL against the Centre’s decision to block the documentary, alleging it was ”malafide, arbitrary and unconstitutional”.
The PIL also urged the apex court to call and examine the BBC documentary – both parts I and II – and sought action against persons who were responsible and involved directly and indirectly with the 2002 Gujarat riots.
On January 21, the Centre issued directions for blocking multiple YouTube videos and Twitter posts sharing links to the controversial BBC documentary ”India: The Modi Question”, according to sources.