Madras HC allows AIADMK govt to erect banners to welcome Modi, Xi to Tamil Nadu

PM Narendra Modi with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edapaddi K Palaniswami and his deputy O Pannneerselvam in Chennai on Monday. (PTI Photo)

The Madras High Court Thursday gave permission to the Tamil Nadu government to erect flex banners welcoming Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping to the state, news agency PTI reported. The two leaders are slated to meet on October 11 and 12 in the coastal town of Mamallapuram.

A division bench of Justices M Sathyanarayanan and N Seshasayee, however, made it clear that the state has to follow all existing rules in connection with installation of such banners. The bench also said no political parties will be allowed to install such banners.

The HC had earlier banned the erection of hoardings on roadsides in 2017 and recently pulled up the government for not effectively implementing its order in the wake of the death of a 22-year-old woman.

Last month, R Subhashri, a software engineer, had died after a hoarding crashed on her in a city suburb. She was run over by a water tanker after she lost balance on her scooter and fell. The illegal banners were installed on either side of the road and on the median by a former AIADMK councillor to announce his son s wedding.

Subhashri died in the accident on September 13. (Express Photo)

Following outrage over the techie’s death, political parties asked their respective cadre to stop erecting hoardings and banners.

The Tamil Nadu government, however, had moved court seeking permission to erect banners at designated places. It had asked the court to pass suitable orders on its proposal.

It is, however, customary on the part of the Ministry of External Affairs to welcome a visiting dignitary by way of banners.

(With inputs from PTI)