SC refuses to entertain PIL for common dress code in educational institutes


The Hindu

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Supreme Court refuses to entertain PIL for common dress code in educational institutes

The Supreme Court on Friday refused to entertain a PIL seeking direction to the Centre, States, and Union Territories to implement a common dress code for staffers and students in registered educational institutions.

A bench of Justices Hemant Gupta and Sudhanshu Dhulia said this is not a matter which should come to the Court for adjudication. The PIL argued that a dress code should be implemented to secure equality and promote fraternity and national integration. Senior advocate Gaurav Bhatia, appearing for PIL petitioner Nikhil Upadhyay, said this is a constitutional issue and sought a direction under the Right to Education Act.

Sensing the Bench’s disinclination to entertain the PIL, the counsel withdrew it.

The plea had been filed in the backdrop of the Karnataka ‘hijab’ row. The same Bench, headed by Justice Gupta, is hearing arguments on a batch of pleas challenging the Karnataka High Court verdict refusing to lift the ban on hijab in educational institutions in the State.

The PIL, which was filed through lawyers Ashwini Upadhyay and Ashwani Dubey, had sought a direction to the Centre to set up a judicial commission or an expert panel to suggest steps for inculcating values of “social and economic justice, socialism secularism and democracy and to promote fraternity dignity unity and national integration among the students”.

“Alternatively, being custodian of the Constitution and protector of fundamental rights, direct the Law Commission of India to prepare a report suggesting steps to secure social equality and to promote fraternity dignity unity and national integration within three months,” it said.

Gujarat Congress working president Jignesh Mevani sentenced to six months in jail in 2016 rioting case

A court in Ahmedabad on Friday sentenced Gujarat Congress’s working president and MLA Jignesh Mevani and 18 others to six months’ simple imprisonment in a 2016 case of rioting.

The case was related to a road blockade agitation staged by Mevani and his associates.

Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate P.N. Goswami, who also imposed a fine on Mevani and others, suspended their sentence till October 17 to enable them file appeals.

The case was registered against Mevani and 19 others at the University police station in Ahmedabad in 2016 for staging road blockade to press their demand that an under-construction building of the law department of Gujarat University be named for Dr. B.R. Ambedkar.

The First Information Report was registered under Indian Penal Code sections 143 (unlawful assembly) and 147 (rioting) as well as sections of the Gujarat Police Act.

One of the accused died during the pendency of the case. Mevani, a prominent Dalit leader, won the 2017 Assembly election as an independent with the support of Congress. The party later made him a working president of its Gujarat unit.

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