SC pulls up states over illegal religious structures on roads, footpaths


NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday pulled up states and union territories for not filing affidavits of steps taken by them for removal of illegal religious structures from public roads and pavements.
The apex court was hearing the petition filed in 2006 in which directions were passed earlier to the states to remove unauthorised constructions, including places of worships, from roads and public places.
After the states and union territories failed to file affidavits on orders of the apex court, a bench of justices V Gopala Gowda and Arun Mishra remarked, “we don’t appreciate this type of attitude”, and posted the matter in the second week of May.
The apex court gave them a final chance with a direction to file the affidavit within two weeks to the additional solicitor general, failing which the chief secretaries of the concerned states will be summoned to explain the non-compliance of various directions of the apex court passed from time to time in this regard.
The bench which was about to pass an order for summoning the chief secretaries at the first instance, modified it after a plea was made by some lawyers appearing for various states.
On March 8, the court received a contempt petition against Chhattisgarh government after which it had asked the state to ascertain the factual position on the basis of the allegations made in the contempt petition.
The apex court had also directed all other states’ counsel to take necessary instructions with regard to the compliance of the interim orders passed by it in this regard from time to time.


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