The writ petition of Panthers Party leaders namely Ms.Anita Thakur its General Secretary, Shri H.C. Jalmeria, Advocate, General Secretary & Shri P.K. Ganjoo, Sr. Journalist and Media Incharge which was filed in September, 2007 against the barbaric police assault on the Panthers Party leaders and Talwara Migrants shall finally be heard by the Supreme Court on 21st August, 2014. Prof.Bhim Singh, Sr. Advocate appeared for the petitioners whereas Mr. Ashok Mathur, Advocate appeared for the State of J&K. A division bench comprising JJ Mrs. Ranjana Prakash Desai and Mr. N.V. Ramana fixed next date after hearing Prof.Bhim Singh and the State counsel. The court directed the State of J&K and other respondents who include Director General Police, J&K, Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, Dy. Commissioner, Reasi as well as the then SHO Katra to file all the documents relating to the payment of relief to the Jammu Migrants who numbered about 2201 according to the state and the status of the implementation of the Supreme Court order relating to entire relief at par with Kashmiri Migrants dated 13.07.2006. Prof.Bhim Singh informed the court that the Supreme Court referred contempt petition against the Union of India, Govt. of J&K on their failure to implement Supreme Court order to provide relief to the Jammu Migrants at par with Kashmiri Migrants. He also informed the court that Rs.21 crores were the arrears pending with the State Govt. which was admitted by the state on record as part of arrears. He further submitted that contempt petition is pending in the High Court of J&K since 2008. He informed the court that J&K Govt. has deliberately chosen to defy the orders of the Supreme Court forcing the Jammu Migrants particularly in Talwara camps to starve. He said that some of the poverty-stricken migrants were forced to sell their children to save rest of their families. He informed the court that instead of registering criminal cases against the police and the administrative officer, the police registered criminal cases against the petitioners and other leaders of the migrants only for the reason that they were escorting the Talwara Migrants in their march to Delhi when they were assaulted brutally near Katra on the main road by the police after blocking the main road to stop the march of the migrants. He said that men, women, the old and even children were not spared by the police. He further submitted that after taking in custody the police assaulted advocate Hari Chand Jalmeria, broke his leg whereas another Panthers Party leader Ms. Anita Thakur was brutally assaulted, banged, kicked and then dragged on the road by the hair which could be screened in the video-film which is already in the custody of the court. The court said that, “We believe you (Bhim Singh) and we shall not change our mind and believe what you say.” Prof.Bhim Singh submitted that, “English is not my mother tongue and the brutality committed by the police cannot be expressed in the words I have in my vocabulary and therefore that can only be realized after witnessing the video shots.” The court directed the State counsel to produce entire record in connection with relief being given to the Jammu Migrants as well as the status of the cases registered against the petitioners and other migrants. Those who assisted Prof. Bhm Singh include Mr. D.K. Garg, Mr. B.S. Billowria, Mr. Sumit Sumbria, Advocates.

A division bench of the Supreme Court of India comprising of JJ Mrs. Ranjana Prakash Desai and Mr. N.V. Ramana started hearing of the petition filed by Ms. Anita Thakur (General Secretary-NPP), H.C. Jalmeria, Advocate & P.K. Ganjoo, Sr. Journalist against the Govt. of J&K, Director General of Police, J&K among others in connection with the police brutalities committed against the petitioners and Talwara Migrants while they were marching peacefully from Reasi to Delhi in support of the Jammu migrants demands for the implementation of the Supreme Court judgment dated 13.07.2006 directing the Union of India and the Govt.of J&K to distribute relief to the Jammu Migrants at par with the Kashmiri Migrants.

It was on 7th August, 2007 that the police on the direction of the government (Congress Chief Minister, Ghulam Nabi Azad was in power) put a police blockade on the main road leading to the Highway at Katra to stop the peaceful marchers, all migrants in order to stop their march towards Delhi. The police, after detaining them at Baba Jito Ghar for six days, started brutal lathicharge on the children, women and old migrants while they were crossing Bali Bridge near Katra. Ms. Anita Thakur was dragged, beaten and assaulted after taking her into custody whereas H.C. Jalmeria, Advocate was beaten, assaulted and his leg was broken after taking him into custody by the Katra police.

Prof.Bhim Singh, Sr. Advocate appearing for the petitioners submitted before the court the entire episode and urged the court to take appropriate action against the culprits. He submitted before the court that the SHO of the area who was architect of the police brutality against the petitioners has since been awarded promotion and also accorded President’s police medal for assaulting the Panthers Party activists. He submitted before the court, when asked, why the government is treating this way the Jammu Migrants. Prof.Bhim Singh informed the court that they are Dogras whereas the Dogras ruled J&K for nearly 100 years and today the government in J&K picks up every opportunity and any opportunity to wreak vengeance on the Dogras may they be employees, or migrants from Jammu. He submitted before the court that he himself (Bhim Singh) has tasted eight years of imprisonment in J&K only because he has been fighting for justice and equity for the people of the state.

Even after calling for the counsel of J&K, none appeared on behalf of the state of J&K which remained a mystery. The court had to adjourn the case till tomorrow for the reason that no advocate on behalf of the respondents namely, State of J&K, Director General of Police, J&K, Divisional Commissioner and others was seen in or around the court.

The court wanted to know about the implementation of the Supreme Court order vis-à-vis relief to the Jammu Migrants, Prof.Bhim Singh informed the court that this direction of this Hon’ble Court has not been implemented by the Govt. of India and the Govt. of J&K. Instead, he submitted, the Govt. of J&K has not bothered to file any reply before the High Court in a contempt application against the Union and the Govt. of J&K for not implementing the courts’ direction. Prof.Bhim Singh further submitted that the contempt application has been pending before the High Court since 2008. The court wanted to know why contempt application before J&K High Court. Prof.Bhim Singh submitted that the contempt application was filed in the Supreme Court which was referred by the Supreme Court to the Chief Justice of J&K for speedy disposal. The court also expressed concern for the delay in the disposal of such an important case.

The court adjourned the matter till tomorrow.