Nation Other News 08 Apr 2021 Telangana HC hits ou ...

Telangana HC hits out at state officials for ignoring its orders

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | VUJJINI VAMSHIDHARA
Published Apr 8, 2021, 7:55 am IST
Updated Apr 8, 2021, 8:53 am IST
HC asks Prashant J. Patil, working as the district collector in Nalgonda, to feed the orphans every weekend for six months as punishment
The court, while disposing of the contempt appeal, observed that in the event of the district collector of Nalgonda  facing any contempt proceedings in future, he shall on his own place a copy of this order along with the reply to the contempt petition for the perusal of the concerned court. — DC file photo
 The court, while disposing of the contempt appeal, observed that in the event of the district collector of Nalgonda facing any contempt proceedings in future, he shall on his own place a copy of this order along with the reply to the contempt petition for the perusal of the concerned court. — DC file photo

 Hyderabad: The Telangana High Court on Wednesday repeatedly advised officials of the state machinery at various levels to be careful and prompt in implementing court orders.

A division bench comprising  Chief Justice Hima Kohli and Justice B. Vijaysen Reddy stated:  “If the state and its machinery show scant regard to the orders of the court, then the court will also treat them with equal distinct. If the officials have the confidence that they can get away from the contempt case by filing an appeal, then this court will shake and stir their confidence.” 

 

The court hinted that  from now on, every contempt case against any officer will be listed out from the records of the high court and  if it was found that any officer was involved  in a contempt  of  court, then it  would take a  serious view of this”.

Opining that nowadays, a  go-easy attitude  has developed among  the contemnor  officials,  Justice B. Vijaysen Reddy reminisced the situations wherein the issuance of a Form-1 Notice by the high court to any official would, in the past, have ended the entire case. Now, the officials seem to have the confidence (to take such things easy) and come to the conclusion that, even if they are contemnors in a contempt case, they can get away with it by filing an appeal and offering an apology. But, the court cannot spare the contemnors,”  Justice Reddy clarified.

 

 The court observed that the contempt cases and contempt appeal cases  are being filed in  larger numbers, and this is forcing the high court  to arrange two  judges  to exclusively  pursue these cases.

The division bench was dealing  with various contempt appeals filed by contemnor  officials who were  found  guilty in contempt cases, and ordered for punishments.

In   the  contempt appeals filed by the then additional  collector Veera Reddy, Sangareddy, the RDO  and tehsildar,    Chief Justice Kohli directed the Registry of the high court to verify, collect and collate information from the court records to ascertain the fact that in how many contempt proceedings did the name of the then additional collector, Sangareddy appeared, and how many orders passed against the contemnor in these contempt proceedings.

 

The court directed the registrar to furnish such data to the court by June 16.

When the court asked about the earlier history of  contempt cases  against  Veera Reddy and other officials, no answer came. So, the court directed the registrar to collate the information about these officials.

“Veera Reddy, the then additional collector of Sangareddy as also the RDO and tehsildar there had deliberately violated the orders of the single Judge and willfully interfered with the peaceful possession and enjoyment of the land admeasuring Ac. 5.01 guntas in Kandi Chimnapur village, Sangareddy district, pertaining to EJ David and three others, despite clear orders from the court, not to interfere with the said land,” the court noted.  

 

The unconditional apology tendered by the then additional collector in the form of an affidavit was allowed only to the extent of granting an exemption for  him in an appearance before the court only for one day, on  the ground that he tested Covid positive. But, the order in the contempt case will remain alive, the court said.

NALGONDA COLLECTOR TO FEED ORPHANS

In another contempt appeal, the high court directed   Prashant J. Patil, working as the district collector in Nalgonda, to feed the orphans  every weekend  for  six months, as a punishment for his willful disobedience  of the court orders.

 

The division bench headed by Chief Justice Hima Kohli directed the collector  to spend two hours every weekend to  serve the destitute  in  one of the  orphanages in Nalgonda. This should be done for six months. “If he misses any weekend, that should be adjustable  by serving  an extra  day,” the court ruled.

The compliance of these orders should be submitted  before the high court  after it was certified by the authority of the orphanage home and the  district  principal judge of Nalgonda, with details as to how many    hours and  the dates thereof he, Patil, had served  in the orphanage. This report should be filed on October 30.

 

Patil, who was the then joint collector, civil supplies, Warangal district, had been found guilty  in a contempt case  for willfully disobeying the orders of the single judge by not allotting custom-milled paddy for the Kharif season 2015-16 to   G. Chandrasekhar, proprietor of Parameshwara Binny Rice Mill, Parvathagiri mandal, Warangal, despite the fact that there were orders from the court that he allot the custom-milled paddy.

The single judge  had directed  Patil  and  D. Sandhyarani, the then DSO of Warnagal, now reitered. to pay a fine of Rs 2000 and in default, suffer simple imprisonment of six weeks.

 

Challenging the orders,  both Patil and Sandhya Rani  filed contempt appeals.  On an earlier occasion, the division bench directed  Prashant J  Patil to do social service, if  he wants to avoid punishment.

On Wednesday, special counsel for Telangana representing  Patil submitted that the collector will undertake the task of  enrolling  more girl students in schools, treating this as a social service, as there was a reduction in girls’ admissions.

The bench disagreed with the proposal  by saying was  his statutory  duty as collector of the district. It directed him to serve the orphanage home in Nalgonda town, in which there are 40 inmates.

 

The court also directed Sandhyarani, retired and   suffering from bad health, to  arrange the  food  in one of the orphanage homes in Malkajgiri area  on  Ugadi  and Srirama Navami  festival days. As she was unable to serve in the orphanage home, due to the ill health, the court directed her to arrange food for two days.

The court, while disposing of the contempt appeal, observed that in the event of the district collector of Nalgonda  facing any contempt proceedings in future, he shall on his own place a copy of this order along with the reply to the contempt petition for the perusal of the concerned court.

 

If the court finds that these orders had not been complied with, then the punishment  will be revived automatically.

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