The Delhi High Court on Friday agreed to hear a PIL challenging imposition of prohibitory orders in and around India Gate here on the ground of maintaining public tranquillity during the stir against the gang rape of a girl.

“We are simply re-notifying the matter on next Wednesday (January 2),” a bench of justices Siddharth Mridul and Pratibha Rani said.

During brief hearing, Additional Solicitor General Siddharth Luthra, appeared for Delhi police and justified the imposition of prohibitory orders under Section 144 of CrPC (dealing with power to issue order in urgent cases of nuisance or apprehended danger) saying it was necessary to maintain public tranquillity.

Justice Mridul, however, said that the matter be heard on January 2.

Anand K Mishra, a Delhi-based lawyer, filed the PIL against the Ministry of Home Affairs, city government and the police seeking a direction to declare as “unconstitutional and illegal” the prohibitory orders issued on December 22.

Seeking framing of “guidelines for imposition of restrictions u/s 144”, the PIL said “penalties be imposed on Respondents” for misusing law to curtail citizens’ fundamental right to “move freely and assemble peacefully.”

“The police have further been acting in derogation of that illegal order imposing total ban and creating curfew like situation around India Gate restricting the magistrate, lawyers, court staff, people and litigants from approaching Patiala House Court complex under the garb that they apprehend problem to public order,” it said.

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