Gujarat HC Declines to Take Suo Motu Cognizance of Attack on Foreign Students

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Gujarat HC Declines to Take Suo Motu Cognizance of Attack on Foreign Students

| Updated: March 18, 2024 13:50

The Gujarat High Court on Monday afternoon refused to take suo motu cognizance of an incident where five foreign students of Gujarat University were allegedly attacked by a mob while praying on the university campus. Chief Justice Sunita Agarwal declined the request, stating that it is a matter for the police to investigate and not a matter of Public Interest Litigation (PIL).

“Every incident in the city is not a matter of PIL. You go to the police. A complaint is to be lodged. It is a matter of police complaint. Don’t substitute this court with the inspectors or police. Don’t make us inspectors or police. We are not the investigating officers,” she emphasised.

An advocate had urged the Court to take suo motu cognizance of the incident, asserting that the police had failed to invoke proper provisions of the law against the assailants. However, Chief Justice Agarwal dismissed this comparison, stating, “No Mr. Counsel that is a completely different aspect. That issue has nothing to do with this issue.”

Concluding her remarks, Chief Justice Agarwal emphasised, “Don’t make us the investigating agency. We’re not doing that. We still want to remind ourselves that we’re constitutional courts, so we will definitely take into cognizance if such matter comes in but this is not one of those.”

Notably, five foreign students at Gujarat University were injured, with two requiring hospitalisation after a group of 20-25 individuals entered their hostel and attacked them for performing namaz during Ramadan. The incident occurred on Saturday night, prompting police intervention and subsequent arrests. Among the injured were students from Sri Lanka, Turkmenistan, various African nations and Afghanistan.

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