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Tripura Violence- High Court Takes Suo Moto Cognizance; Seeks State's Reply On Plan To Scuttle Design Of Stoking Communal Passion

Sparsh Upadhyay
30 Oct 2021 3:57 AM GMT
Tripura Violence- High Court Takes Suo Moto Cognizance; Seeks States Reply On Plan To Scuttle Design Of Stoking Communal Passion
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The Tripura High Court, after taking suo moto cognizance of the issue of violence in North Tripura District, Unakoti District as well as Sipahijala District, called upon the state to file its reply (on or before 10th November 2021) on preventive measures taken by it and enquired as to what is their plan to scuttling the design of stoking communal passion.Significantly, the Bench of Chief...

The Tripura High Court, after taking suo moto cognizance of the issue of violence in North Tripura District, Unakoti District as well as Sipahijala District, called upon the state to file its reply (on or before 10th November 2021) on preventive measures taken by it and enquired as to what is their plan to scuttling the design of stoking communal passion.

Significantly, the Bench of Chief Justice Indrajit Mahanty and Justice S. Talapatra appreciated the steps taken by various political parties to restore peace and order within the state. The Court also acknowledged the 'active positive role' played by the print media to restore peace and order within the state.

Having perused a brief note filed by the State Government indicating some of the important steps taken by it to bring about communal harmony as well as action taken against the perpetrator of such violence, the Court stressed that its sole concern is regarding the protection of life, liberty, and property of all citizens of Tripura.

The Court also underscored that the State owes its responsibilities insofar as maintenance of law and order as well as providing citizens with the security to protect their life, livelihood as well as properties.

Further, taking note of the fact that various peace committees have been formed in various locations where communal strife exists, the Court called for further expanding of the steps and observed thus:

"The state may consider forming peace committees not only at district levels but also at sub-divisional levels and if necessary at panchayet levels as well and we call upon all political parties to participate fully in such peace process so that confidence of the people of the state can be restored and the underlying strife that exists can be suitably dealt with."

Additionally, noting that various cases have been registered pursuant to the violence that took place on 26th October 2021 and incidence which took place prior thereto, the Court called upon the state to file an affidavit stating the stages at which the investigation is going on and as to whether any accused has been apprehended in such manner.

The Court has also directed the state to take urgent action in this regard so that the livelihood of persons who have lost their source of income can be restored at the earliest.

Appreciating the role of the media in maintaining peace, the Court asked the media to remain vigilant at all times and continue discharging its duty in a responsible manner.

However, the Court also expressed its concern over the submission of the Advocate General for the State that social media, in particular, have been carrying certain articles or visual footages which are either morphed and/or unrelated to the State of Tripura with the sole intent of once again reigniting the passions of people.

In this regard, the Court directed the State to initiate appropriate action against all such social media platforms in order to ensure that such false, fictitious, and or fabricated news articles or visual footages do not come on to the social media platforms and even if they do so that they are removed at the earliest opportunity.

"This Court calls upon the social media platforms to also act responsibly since today. Media has every right, as a part of their activities to publish the truth. It should not be allowed to be used to spread untruth and spread communal passion," the Court further added.

Case title - Court on own motion

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