Political ads not allowed on autos: Delhi govt to HC
New Delhi: The city government has told the Delhi High Court that political advertisements are not allowed on public service vehicles, including autorickshaws.
The submission was made before a bench of justices B D Ahmed and Vibhu Bakhru, which was hearing a plea against Delhi government's 2013 order prohibiting advertisements and posters on auto rickshaws.
Delhi government's transport department placed before the court its latest guidelines for display of advertisements on public service vehicles, as per which any advertisement containing political, ethnic, religious or sectarian text will not be permitted.
Advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for auto drivers, objected to the inclusion of the word 'political' in the guidelines. The bench asked the petitioners to file a fresh application opposing the guidelines if they are aggrieved by it and said "then we will consider it".
Responding to the plea of the auto drivers that some coercive steps may be taken against them for displaying political advertisements, the court said "nothing will happen" and listed the matter for hearing on August 22.
The auto drivers had in their plea filed in 2013 contended that the government's June 6, 2013 order prohibiting them from putting advertisements and posters on their autos is "discriminatory" against poor auto drivers and is also targeted at Aam Aadmi Party whose posters were put up by thousands of auto drivers.
The court had in June last year stayed Delhi government's ban on advertisements on autorickshaws.
In May this year, Delhi government had informed the court that it is in the process of finalizing the general guidelines for allowing advertisements on public service vehicles and the same is under submission for approval of the Lt Governor.