Karnataka HC upholds ‘ban on PFI with immediate effect’, Legal News, ET LegalWorld – Legal Firms


The Karnataka high court on Wednesday dismissed a petition challenging a Union government notification dated September 28, 2022 banning “with immediate effect” the Popular Front of India (PFI) and its affiliate-organisations under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

Dismissing the petition filed by Nasir Pasha, a Bengaluru resident and president of the Karnataka unit of the PFI who is now in judicial custody in Tihar jail, Justice M Nagaprasanna noted that the SC has recorded that the state can impose reasonable restrictions on Article 19(1)(c) – which confers on all citizens the right to form associations and unions – in the interest of sovereignty, integrity or public order or morality under Article 19(4).

Article 19(4) mandates that nothing in Article 19(1)(c) shall … prevent the state from making any law imposing reasonable restrictions on the exercise of the said right conferred by clause(c) of Article 19(1),” the judge noted in his order.

“The purport of Article 19(4) is that the government is empowered to impose reasonable restrictions even on the fundamental right under Article 19(1)(c) if it would harm the sovereignty, integrity, public order or morality. All that is found in the reasons recorded in the impugned notification,” the judge said.

Justice Nagaprasanna said a perusal of the notification under challenge would indicate that reasons are present in the said notification itself. “Article 19(1)(c) of the Constitution of India, on which much emphasis is laid, is also hedged with reasonable restrictions to be imposed in certain circumstances under Article 19(4) of the Constitution of India. Therefore, in the light of the judgment rendered by the high court of Delhi in the case of Islamic Research Foundation which was considering the case of Mohammad Jafar rendered by the Supreme Court…, I do not find that the notification warrants any interference…”

The judge added that any further consideration of the submissions made on behalf of the petitioner would prejudice the proceedings before the tribunal, which has already been formed.


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