Above: A defaced wall of Delhi university/Photo: UNI
The Delhi High Court on Friday (December 22) directed the Union of India (UoI) to come up with a comprehensive plan similar to Swacch Bharat Abhiyan for stopping the defacement of properties during elections.
The Court also directed UoI to inform the people about the penalties which could be given to defaulters for the defacing of properties.
The bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar was acting on the plea seeking cancellation of DUSU election for not following the guideline issued by the Election Commission putting a ban on defacement of public property during electioneering.
During the course of proceedings, the petitioner submitted that about 18 cognizable offences in relation to defacement of property have been registered.
Taking cognizance of it, the bench directed authorities to consider the issue and said: “The authorities shall publicise on a large scale to inform the public what could be the consequences of defacing the public properties across the city.
The bench also made it clear that they will not tolerate any leniency in the implementation of the plan proposed by the authorities before the next date of hearing.
Petitioner also informed the bench that 23 students who contested the DUSU election are not attending the meetings and their cooperation is needed to clean the mess they have done.
The bench directed those 23 students to attend the next proposed meeting on January 12, 2018.
The Court also directed UoI to take immediate steps to clean all the defaced public properties and should propose or implement guidelines in meeting so that nothing like this happen in the future. The guidelines should clearly mention the legal consequences of defacing a public property, the bench said.
The bench directed: “The meeting should be attended by DMRC, PWD, MCD, GNCTD, DUSU board, DU, petitioner and other stakeholders on January 12, 2018. The minutes of meeting should be recorded and be presented in the next date of hearing.”
The bench listed the matter for next hearing to January 30, 2018.
—India Legal Bureau