Petition filed against Rajasthan ordinance

By NL Team

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The Rajasthan government’s immunity bill, the Criminal Laws (Rajasthan Amendment) Ordinance 2017, was tabled in the state Assembly on Monday. The controversial ordinance was put out last month by the Vasundhara Raje government, barring ministers, government officials and lawmakers from any probe into complaints against them. While the House was adjourned for a day after the Congress staged a walkout, a petition has been filed in the Rajasthan High Court against the gag ordinance.

In the public interest litigation, filed by advocate AK Jain on behalf of activist Bhagwat Kaur, the petitioner stated that the ordinance, if it became law, would not only curb free speech but also “subvert the wisdom of judiciary”. 

“The government has extended protection to all public servants against investigation which is violative of Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution. Protection should be reasonable it cannot extend to all public servants,” the petition reads. 

The petition also states that the “two years imprisonment” for those publishing anything about a public servant without sanction was a violation of Article 19 of the constitution. 

CNN-News18 reported that the petitioner had earlier filed a complaint against a government official and action was taken against the official. However, if the ordinance is passed, “such big case of misuse of public property and breach of trust would have gone under the carpet,” the petition said.