SC stays Uttarakhand HC order to shift HC out of Nainital

The HC pointed out that Nainital is a well known tourist destination, with visitors from different parts of the country and abroad, and traffic congestion is one of the biggest problems in the city.
Uttarakhand High Court (File Photo| PTI)
Uttarakhand High Court (File Photo| PTI)

The Supreme Court on Monday stayed the May 8 order of the Uttarakhand High Court directing the state government to relocate the High Court, which is now in Nainital.

The Uttarakhand HC in its May 8 order had ordered the chief secretary of the state government to find an alternate location for the HC, residential accommodation of judges, judicial officers, staff, court rooms, conference hall and chambers for at least 7,000 lawyers, canteen and parking space.

The HC pointed out that Nainital is a well known tourist destination, with visitors from different parts of the country and abroad, and traffic congestion is one of the biggest problems in the city. Keeping this in view, it directed that the HC be shifted out of Nainital.

The apex court's two-judge vacation bench led by Justice P S Narasimha and Justice Sanjay Karol on Friday stayed the HC order after hearing an appeal filed by the Uttarakhand High Court Bar Association (UKHCBA) challenging the HC order.

Asking the Uttarakhand government to file its response to the appeal by UKHCBA, the apex court fixed the matter for further hearing after the summer vacations.

Uttarakhand High Court (File Photo| PTI)
Former Uttarakhand CM Koshyari suggests judiciary stay out of Nainital HC transfer matter

The HC bench, led by Chief Justice Ritu Bahri and Justice Rakesh Thapliyal, in their May 8 order had also directed the chief secretary of the Uttarakhand government to complete the entire exercise within a month and submit a report by June 7.

The High Court had also ordered the formation of a committee comprising the Registrar General of the Uttarakhand HC, Principal Secretary, Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs, Principal Secretary, Home, and two senior advocates.

"Since opinion of practising lawyers is also very essential, therefore, Registrar General of this (HC) Court is directed to open a portal by May 14, 2024 and lawyers are free to give their choice by opting yes if they are interested for shifting of High Court and no if they are not interested by indicating their enrolment number, date and signature. They shall exercise their option by May 31, 2024 and this date will not be extended," the HC said.

The UKHCBA had then moved the Supreme Court against this order.

The HC in its order noted that when Uttarakhand was created in 2000, the sanctioned strength of the HC was only three judges. Within 20 years, the strength has gone to 11. In the next 50 years, the strength is likely to go up by at least eight times, it added.

Related Stories

No stories found.

X
The New Indian Express
www.newindianexpress.com