A bench of Justice Ashok Pal Singh, Justice Devi Prasad Singh and Justice Ajay Lamba, while hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a local advocate Ranjana Agnihotri, said the move can only be taken forward with the sanction of the union government.
The petitioner had alleged that the Akhilesh Yadav government had initiated the move to appease the Muslims.
The state government had earlier this year initiated a process to withdraw terror charges levelled against 19 Muslim youth for their alleged role in serial blasts in courts at Faizabad, Lucknow and Gorakhpur. The Samajwadi Party in its poll manifesto for the 2012 state assembly polls had promised to release such terror accused presuming they were innocent.
Reacting sharply, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) said that the decision of whether the accused were guilty or not cannot be taken by the government and should be left to the judiciary.
“This is a tight slap on the face of the state government which works 24×7 to appease the Muslims for its narrow vote bank politics,” BJP state spokesman Chandra Mohan said.
Congress spokesman Akhilesh Pratap Singh also said that the courts should decide who is guilty or not guilty.