SC rejects PIL challenging closure of J&K National Highway for civilian traffic
New Delhi, May 06: The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a PIL that challenged the Jammu and Kashmir government's decision to partially close the National Highway for civilian traffic till May 31.
Counsel for the Jammu and Kashmir government told the bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Deepak Gupta that the order restricting traffic on the national highway was taken due to the ongoing election and will remain in force till May 31.
The bench, after hearing the submissions, said, "We are not inclined to keep this petition pending."
In April, the state administration had banned civilian traffic movement between Baramulla and Udhampur on National Highway 44 from 4 am to 5 pm on Sundays and Wednesdays till May 31. This was done to enable the increased movement of security forces before and during the Lok Sabha elections. The move came after the Pulwama attack on February 14, in which 40 Central Reserve Police Force personnel were killed.
The order was criticised by political leaders, who called it anti-civilian and filed petitions in the J&K High Court against the ban. The Centre justified the decision as a reasonable one and said it would ensure safe movement of security forces.