New Delhi, Jun 6: The Supreme Court today took suo motu cognisance of the midnight crack down on yoga guru Ramdev and his followers and sought an explanation from the Centre about the circumstances which compelled it to take "brutal" action at the Ramlila ground in the national capital.
The apex court expressed concern over the "police atrocities" and use of "brutal force" to disperse the "innocent" people gathered at the site of Ramdev's hunger strike against black money on the intervening nights of June 4 and 5.
"Considering the gravity of the police atrocities and the brutal force that was used by the police to disperse the innocent people who had gathered at Ramlila Maidan in furtherence to the permission granted by the state is a matter of concern for the court," a vacation bench of justices B S Chauhan and Swatanter Kumar said.
The bench issued notices to the Union Home Secretary, Delhi Chief Secretary and the Delhi Police Commissioner, asking them to respond within two weeks about the circumstances under which "such power with brutality and atrocities was asserted against a large people gathered at Ramlila Maidan".
The court took note of articles and reports published in national dailies depicting the "sad state of affairs and brutality of the state in dealing with its innocent citizens".
"Thus, we, suo motu, issue notices to the Union Home Secretary, Chief Secretary, Delhi and the Police Commissioner of Delhi to show cause and file their personal affidavits within two weeks from today explaining the circumstances in which such power with brutality and atrocities was asserted against large people who had gathered at Ramlila Maidan," the bench said and listed the matter for further hearing before the vacation bench.
The media reports and newspapers were placed before the bench by advocate Ajay Agarwal.
He had also filed a petition seeking a direction for the government to issue a white paper on the entire episode and eviction of the yoga guru and his followers which he had alleged was against fundamental rights guaranteed under Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution.
However, the moment he stated that the entire incident was shocking in which police used force in the midnight to disperse yoga guru's followers, the bench interrupted him and expressed its displeasure that the contents of the petition were published in the media before it came up for hearing.
"Though the writ petition is not listed before the court, still, however, we are shocked to know that all grounds and particulars taken in the petition by Agarwal have already been published in the press further stating that the matter is listed for hearing today in the court at 10:30 am, which is factually incorrect," the bench said. PTI