KOCHI: Coming down heavily on the practice of political parties erecting flagpoles at public places, the Kerala High Court on Tuesday directed the state government to inform it about the steps being taken to remove such unauthorised poles.
Justice Devan Ramachandran issued the directive on a petition filed by Mannam Sugar Mills Cooperative Ltd, Pandalam, seeking to remove the flagpoles erected by various trade unions before the mill’s gates.
The court observed that flagpoles could be seen in every nook and cranny in the state. These had even led to law and order problems. Hence, the government should take stringent action against this practice.
The court said it has failed to understand under what authority such poles are being erected on roadsides and public places. In fact, the situation in the state is such that any organisation can erect flagpoles at public places.
If a common man erects a flagpole, action is taken against the person. However, when established institutions and political organisations do it, no action is taken against them. The court noted that erection of flagpoles in public places is against the land conservancy law.
“If some people erect a post on the roadside, then there’s political allegiance attached to it. If someone asks them to shift it to another place, there are fights, saying someone has removed the flag. They erect flag posts wherever they want to,” the court observed orally. The court impleaded the secretary, local self-government institutions, as a respondent and posted the case for further hearing on November 1.