Notices ordered to 13 Collectors

The Madras High Court Bench here on Monday admitted a public interest litigation (PIL) petition filed by a lawyer seeking a direction to Collectors of all 13 districts under its jurisdiction to ban erection of hoardings, and sticking of bills and posters by political parties near court campuses.

A Division Bench of Justice V. Ramasubramanian and Justice V.M. Velumani ordered notices to the Collectors and the Registrar (Administration) of the High Court Bench returnable by two weeks.

S.P. Ganesh, a lawyer hailing from Natham in Dindigul district, filed the PIL petition on the grounds that such publicity materials lowered the image of the judiciary.

The lawyer stated that the Dindigul court campus turned into a battleground on November 22, 2013, when members of two political parties pelted stones and footwear at each other following a row over the damage caused to a banner of a political leader by the rival party men.

He said in Madurai court too, an advocate assaulted another with a stone recently due to a disagreement between them over sticking posters on the court campus. The police registered a First Information Report with regard to the incident, he added.

Save dignity

Claiming that political publicity materials had become a common sight on almost all court campuses in southern districts, he said the dignity of the judiciary could be saved only if the government officials took effective action to make court campuses free from hoardings and posters.

He claimed that representations had been made to the Collectors of Madurai, Dindigul, Sivaganga, Virudhunagar, Ramanathapuram, Tirunelveli, Tuticorin, Kanyakumari, Tiruchi, Pudukottai, Thanjavur, Theni and Karur in this regard on December 9.