Why protest when laws in abeyance: SC

The SC questioned farm unions for continuing their protests when none of the three agricultural laws are in force, having been kept in abeyance for 18 months by the court since January after an assurance from the government.

“Why is the protest on when the three laws are not in force at all? They have been kept in abeyance by the court. There is a stay. The government is also bound by the law enacted by Parliament, isn’t it?” said a bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and CT Ravikumar.

This observation came on a petition filed by Kisan Mahapanchayat, which has sought permission to hold protests at Jantar Mantar.

The bench questioned the petitioner for moving the Rajasthan HC, challenging the validity of the farm laws and simultaneously requesting for permission to protest. The “Once a party goes to court challenging an Act or action of the executive, then the matter is sub judice. How can the same party say irrespective of filing the petition, it still has a right to protest? You can move the court and request for deciding the matter expeditiously. No one else can decide the validity of an Act or executive action. It is not for anyone else to judge.”

Attorney General K K Venugopal said, “The government has made it very clear that it is not going to withdraw the laws. The only choice before them (farmers) is to take forward their challenge before the constitutional court.”

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