Supreme Court refuses to entertain BJP plea challenging ban on loudspeakers in West Bengal

As the court was inclined to dismiss the plea, the counsel offered to withdraw it, which was allowed.

Published: 11th February 2019 09:29 PM  |   Last Updated: 11th February 2019 09:29 PM   |  A+A-

Supreme Court

Supreme Court (File | PTI)


NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court Monday refused to entertain a plea of the West Bengal BJP seeking to overturn the 2013 ban enforced by the Mamata Banerjee government on the use of loudspeakers in the state between February and March due to the 10th and 12th board examinations.

A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan and Justice Sanjiv Khanna expressed unwillingness to allow the plea, leading senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi to withdraw it.

"Counsel for the petitioner seeks leave of this court to withdraw the writ petition. The writ petition is dismissed as withdrawn," the court said.

At the outset, the bench questioned the move of the party to assail the order saying "You are challenging an order of 2013?" 

"Yes, but it is applied every year," the lawyer said, adding that the apex court had recently allowed the party to move the state government afresh to seek permission to hold 'rath yatra' and without the use of the loudspeakers, they (rath yatra) would be of no value.

"We are not saying that you are coming late," the bench said, adding that children are also writing their board examinations.

Rohatgi said the freedom of speech and expression of the party was also an important issue and use of loudspeakers were necessary for holding rallies and 'rath yatras'.

As the court was inclined to dismiss the plea, the counsel offered to withdraw it, which was allowed.

The court also did not allow the plea of Rohatgi that the party be allowed to approach the Calcutta High Court on the issue, saying ""If you want to withdraw, withdraw it. But we are not giving any liberty to approach the High Court." 

Earlier, BJP had come to the apex court alleging that the state, which has allowed its rallies, has denied permission to hold 'rathy atras' on the ground that there were fears of communal tension in the state.

The apex court had said that the party will have to seek fresh approval for holding 'rath yatras' from the state authorities.

The top court had also asked the authorities to take a decision on the plea of BJP keeping in mind the fundamental right of freedom of speech and expression of the party.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp