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Delhi HC directs Police to decide a request to hold Black Lives Matter protest outside Uttar Pradesh Bhawan

Aditi Singh

The Delhi High Court today directed Delhi Police to consider as a representation a petition by Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) seeking permission to hold a peaceful 'Black Lives Matter' protest outside Uttar Pradesh Bhawan.

The order was passed by a single Judge Bench of Navin Chawla while considering a petition preferred by Indigenous People of Biafra (Petitioner).

The Petitioner is an organization that works for the care and welfare of people from the Biafra region in Nigeria, Africa.

Arguing that Black lives mattered even in India, the Petitioner intended to stage a demonstration outside Uttar Pradesh Bhawan against the alleged illegal detention of two Biafrans by Greater Noida Police since September 2019.

The Petitioner asserted that till date, neither have the charges against them been told nor have their relatives been informed of the reason for their illegal arrest.

It is stated that representations were made to various authorities regarding the illegal detention of the Biafrans but to no avail.

Finally, a representation was sent by the Petitioner to Delhi Police Commissioner and SHO of Chanakyapuri Police Station, requesting permission to hold peaceful protest under the banner of IPOB and Black Lives Matter at Uttar Pradesh Bhawan.

Seeking a direction to permit them to hold the protest, the Petitioner stated,

That the Great Constitution of this Country Grants Equality to Every Person whether a citizen or non citizen and thus even foreigners have equal rights to hold peaceful protest akin to the same rights available to that of the citizens of this Country..Because Black Lives matter even in India and the constitution of India provides equal rights to all the persons India of any race or religion and the principals of equality have also been bestowed upon a foreigner even if he is black.

The Petitioner had also sought directions to UP Police to allow the illegaly detained Bifarns to meet their advocates and relatives and to produce documents of their detention.

In view of the above, the Court directed Commissioner, Delhi Police to consider the contents of the present petition as a representation seeking permission to hold the protest and communicate its decision to the Petitioner within three days.

"Needless to say that if the petitioner is aggrieved of the decision of the respondent no.1, it shall always be open to the petitioner to challenge the same in accordance with the law.", the Court said.

With respect to prayers seeking relief qua illegal detention of two biafrans, the Court stated that since the two were in the custody of the police at Greater Noida, State of Uttar Pradesh, it did not have the territorial jurisdiction to entertain the prayers.

The Petitioner was represented by Advocates Kamlesh Kumar Mishra, Bibhuti Bhushan Mishra and Kriti Kumari.

State was represented by Additional Standing Counsel Anuj Aggarwal.

Read the Order:

IPOB vs Commissioner of Police - June 19.pdf
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