Jammu, November 21: Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Sindhu Sharma has sought the personal appearance of the Commissioner Secretary to the Government, Revenue Department on next date of hearing after taking serious note of inordinate delay in filing of Action Taken Report regarding the religious structures which have encroached upon public land across the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
Pertinent to mention here that as there was no compliance to the directions again & again, the Division Bench vide order dated August 14, 2020 directed that the copy of order dated February 10, 2020 be placed before the Chief Secretary of Government of J&K Union Territory for taking appropriate steps and ensuring that the status report in terms thereof was positively filed before September 18, 2020.
When the writ petition again came up for hearing on September 18, 2020, as usual the Senior Additional Advocate General again sought time to file status report in terms of order dated February 10, 2020 but the DB of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Vinod Chatterji Koul had observed on September 18, 2020 while granting time till November 20, 2020 this is an urgent matter and needs immediate attention of the respondents.
However, despite numerous directions of the High Court since February this year, there is no compliance at all and when the writ petition came up for hearing yesterday the Government again made prayer for grant of more time.
Taking serious note of dilly-dallying approach in respect of matter which has already been dealt by the Supreme Court of the country, the Division Bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Sindhu Sharma said that this petition was registered in the public interest pursuant to the directions made by the Supreme Court on January 31, 2018 and almost eight months have lapsed since we issued first direction to the Government but till date there is no compliance.
The DB further said that on several dates time had been sought to place the status of the steps taken after the filing of the last affidavit dated August 2, 2014 before the Supreme Court and action taken report regarding the religious structures which have encroached public land but till date affidavit has not been filed.
Accordingly, DB directed that Commissioner Secretary to the Government, Revenue Department shall remain present before the court on next date of hearing on December 22, 2020.