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SC directs UP govt to refund crores recovered from anti-CAA protestors

By Priyanka Verma 
Updated Date

Lucknow: The Supreme Court on Friday, February 18, directed Uttar Pradesh administration to refund crores of rupees recovered from anti-CAA protestors in view of proceedings initiated in 2019. The Yogi Adityanath-led government had told the Apex Court that on February 13 and 14, it withdrew 274 recovery notices issued against anti-CAA protestors for destruction of properties.

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A bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and Surya Kant said the state government will refund the entire amount worth crores of rupees, recovered from the alleged protestors. The bench, however, granted liberty to the state government to proceed against the protestors under the new law — Uttar Pradesh Recovery of Damages to Public and Private Property Act – notified on August 31, 2020.

The bench refused to accept the submission of additional advocate general Garima Prashad that the protestors and the state government be allowed to move the claim tribunal instead of directing refunds.

On February 11, the top court had pulled up the UP government for acting on the recovery notices issued to the alleged anti-CAA protestors in December 2019 and gave one final opportunity to it to withdraw the proceedings, failing which it warned of quashing the proceedings for being in violation of the law.

It had said that the proceedings initiated in December 2019 were contrary to the law laid down by the Supreme Court and cannot be sustained.

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The apex court was hearing a plea filed by one Parwaiz Arif Titu seeking quashing of notices sent to alleged protestors by the district administration for recovering losses caused by damage to public properties during the anti-CAA agitations in UP and asked the state to respond to it. The plea said such notices were sent to even a person who had died six years ago at the age of 94 and also to several others, including two people who are aged above 90.

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