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New Plea In Kerala High Court Seeks Fresh Public Consultation For Draft Lakshadweep Town & Country Planning Regulation 2021

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
28 May 2021 9:35 AM GMT
New Plea In Kerala High Court Seeks Fresh Public Consultation For Draft Lakshadweep Town & Country Planning Regulation 2021
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A PIL has been filed before the Kerala High Court seeking fresh public consultation before finalization of the Draft Lakshadweep Town and Country Planning Regulation, 2021. The Regulation provides for acquisition, alteration and transfer of the landed properties owned by the islanders belonging to the Scheduled Tribes. It also proposes to impose restrictions to the use...

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A PIL has been filed before the Kerala High Court seeking fresh public consultation before finalization of the Draft Lakshadweep Town and Country Planning Regulation, 2021.

The Regulation provides for acquisition, alteration and transfer of the landed properties owned by the islanders belonging to the Scheduled Tribes. It also proposes to impose restrictions to the use of landed properties in Lakshadweep.

The Petitioner, Mohammed Sadique has stated that the UT Administration has failed to conduct a proper Pre-Legislative Consultation over this policy, amounting to denial of right to life and violation of natural justice of the people of Lakshadweep.

He has submitted that even though an opportunity was offered to the people of Lakshadweep to make their suggestions, they were not able to avail such opportunity due to the declaration of lockdown during that period.

He has further stated that though the people were permitted to furnish their suggestions/ concerns through e-mail, they could not avail such facility as there is no internet connectivity in Lakshadweep except in Kavaratti. In any case, most of the people are incapable to send email as they do not have e-mail accounts.

"Being a central enactment especially a harsh law infringing the civil rights of the people, the natural justice and the right guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution of India demands fair opportunity of being heard by way of "Public Consultation" before passing such enactment," the petition states.

It further highlights that though the draft rules were placed in public domain through pre-legislative process, they were not accompanied by an explanatory note in a language that the local people can understand.

It is thus urged that a direction be made to the UT Administration to issue a fresh public notice, accompanied by an explanatory note explaining key legal provisions of the draft Regulations in Malayalam and give 30 days' time to the public to submit their comments, suggestions etc.

It is also prayed that the summary or feedback/ comments received from the public/ Lakshadweep people be published on its official website before publishing final notification of the Regulation.

The Petitioner is represented by Advocates Joby Cyriac and Kurian K Jose.

In related news, the Kerala High Court today declined to stay the operation of the Draft Lakshadweep Development Authority Regulation 2021 (LDAR), allowing the Lakshadweep Administration two weeks to respond to a public interest litigation assailing the Regulation.


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