Tamil Nadu: FIR against Tasmac shop protesters quashed

The bench said the relief sought for by the petitioners is granted by quashing the FIR.

Chennai: Quashing the FIR and ordering the immediate release of agitators against re-locating the Tasmac shop at Sivashakthi Nagar in Thirumullavoyal, the Madras High Court posed eight queries relating to agitations staged by the people against the Tasmac shops to be answered by the state government by June 12.

"Taking note of the agitation only with regard to the opening of the Tasmac shop hurriedly in a residential area, people are justified in staging the demonstration. In the process, the flex board was brought down and set on fire and therefore, this court directs a sum of Rs 1,000 to be paid to the Legal Services Authority. Taking into account the circumstances of the case, this court is of the view that the FIR itself has to be quashed and accordingly, the same is quashed", said a division bench comprising Justices N. Kirubakaran and V. Parthiban.

The bench said the relief sought for by the petitioners is granted by quashing the FIR. However, the matter is kept pending for getting the details from the authorities as to how many agitations have been staged by the people for the past two months against the Tasmac shops, how many persons have been arrested so far, who are all the political parties involved in these agitations, whether any violence or act is committed during the agitations, how many persons were injured in case of any lathi charge in these agitations, how many shops have been relocated after the Supreme Court order, how many shops are sought to be located in the residential area, regarding which the agitations are being undertaken by the people spontaneously, especially by the women and how many public properties have been damaged and what is the value.

Prasanna and 20 others were arrested by the police on April 29 for staging a demonstration before the Tasmac shop at Sivashakthi Nagar in Thirumullaivoyal and they were remanded to judicial custody. Seeking to enlarge them on bail, they filed the present petitions.

The bench said the people were agitating against the opening of Tasmac shop in the midst of the residential area. The photographs produced before this court would show that hurriedly they opened the Tasmac shop converting a car parking area into a shop in the midst of the residential area. Moreover, a temple was located nearby the shop, the bench added.

The bench said in view of the nuisance being created by the drunkards, others were very much worried and they staged a demonstration. The only violent act, which was alleged to have been committed by the petitioners, was bringing down the flex board and setting it on fire. It was very difficult to assess the mood of the masses. This kind of thing cannot be avoided when an agitation was staged. However, the observation does not mean that this court was encouraging any violence. , the bench added.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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