Non-allotment of accommodation:Court comes to rescue of visually impaired lawyer

Jammu: Justice B.S. Walia of Jammu Kashmir High Court (Jammu Wing) came to the rescue of a visually impaired lawyer Suraj Singh who made a mention before the Court that despite the directions passed by the State High Court on November, 27, 2012 to accord consideration for allotment of residential accommodation having regard to the mandate of J&K Estates Department (Allotment of Government Accommodation) Regulations 2004 and Jammu and Kashmir Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1998 the Estates Department has miserably failed to implement the directions of the State High Court when only two weeks had been allowed to comply the directions of the State High Court dated November, 27, 2012.

Advocate Suraj Singh while appearing in person drew the attention of the Court towards Regulation No.4(e) of J&K Estates Department (Allotment of Government Accommodation) Regulations, 2004 which provides 5% discretionary quota placed at the discretion of the Minister for Estates for persons other than Government Employees which will include Freedom fighters, ex-legislators and media persons also. Advocate Suraj Singh further submitted that he is the only visually impaired lawyer in the Jammu Province who is practicing in the State High Court and he had approached the then Hon’ble Chief Minister by way of representation dated September, 1st, 2012 for allotment of suitable accommodation looking into his peculiar facts and circumstances i.e. 100% visual disability.

Considering the submissions of Advocate Suraj Singh Justice B.S. Walia expressed his displeasure over the delay in the implementation of the directions passed on November, 27, 2012 and directed Director Estates, J&K Government to remain personally present on the next date of hearing to explain the reasons for not complying the directions of the Court. Justice B.S. Walia further directed that in case before the adjourned date of hearing Director Estates, J&K files the compliance report then he need not to appear in person. (CNS)

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