Mob lynching: ‘No details of nodal officers on state govt websites’, petitioners tell SC

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday was told that websites of various state governments did not contain details of nodal officers appointed in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the apex court to prevent incidents of mob violence and lynching.

“We have passed an order. Let the Attorney General be here,” said a bench comprising Justices Sanjiv Khanna and S.V.N. Bhatti, while again directing the Union government and all the states to ensure filing of compliance affidavits in the matter.

Senior advocate Colin Gonsalves, appearing for the petitioners, submitted that he was “surprised” to find that websites of the state governments did not have details relating to nodal officers.

Gonsalves sought directions that the state governments should upload all data on their website for access to the general public.

In the last hearing, the bench sought a status report from all state governments giving year-wise data from 2018 with regard to the number of complaints received, FIRs registered, and the charge sheets filed in mob violence cases.

Also, it asked the Union Home Ministry to file a report after convening a meeting of the Heads of Departments of all the state governments.

However, senior advocate Sanjay Hegde submitted that the Union government did not file the report containing preventive and remedial measures to curb the menace of hate speech.

Due to non-availability of Attorney General R. Venkataramani, the top court adjourned the matter for further hearing in the week commencing from November 20 on a non-miscellaneous day.

In its 2018 judgment in Tehseen S. Poonawalla case, the Supreme Court had directed designation of nodal officer in each district for taking measures to prevent incidents of mob violence and lynching.

“The Director General of Police/the Secretary, Home Department of the concerned states shall take regular review meetings (at least once a quarter) with all the Nodal Officers and State Police Intelligence heads,” it had ordered.


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