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Notification on students' concessions in buses upheld

By Our Staff Reporter

KOCHI, JULY 2. The Kerala High Court today upheld a Government order issued in 2001 fixing concessional fares for students travelling in private buses.

Justice K. Balakrishnan Nair upheld the order while dismissing a writ petition filed by the Kottayam District Private Bus Operators' Association challenging the order. According to the petitioner, the operation of bus services was no longer profitable.

The Association contended that the Government had no power to fix a particular fare for students. Therefore, the notification should be declared invalid.

The court held that under section 67(1)(i) of the Motor Vehicles Act the Government had the power to fix fares of stage carriages for different classes of vehicles. The notification had fixed different fares for different classes of stage carriages like ordinary and fast passengers. The court dismissed the contention of the petitioner that in the absence of any provision enabling the Government to fix a particular fares, the Government could not grant concessions to students. The court also noted that the notification had been challenged by the Association 33 months after the issue of the notification. No explanation was given for the delay in filing the writ petition.

Former MLA

denied bail

Justice G. Sasidharan dismissed an anticipatory bail petition filed by Younus Kunju, former Eravipuram MLA and a cashew exporter from Kollam, in a case of alleged cheating involving the State Bank of Travancore (SBT) Kollam branch.

The CBI had conducted raids at the factory and residence of Mr. Younus Kunju who was arrayed as second accused in the case on June 25. The CBI's case was that the cashew exporter had requested for a loan of Rs.3 crores for purchase of raw cashew nuts after producing two export orders from a local agent of a Bangok-based firm. The bank manger, E. Chellappa, had recommended disbursal of Rs.1.5 crores without obtaining the supply order. The bank manger recommended the credit despite the fact that that the exporter owed an outstanding liability of Rs.5 crores to the bank . He made the request despite the fact that export order did not indicate the price of the products. The executive committee of the bank had sanctioned Rs.1.5 crores. The CBI said that the stock of Mr. Kunju indicated that no such purchase was made and that he had not exported any stocks. Besides, the petitioner had failed to repay the money fully as per the terms within four months. The other charge was that he had dishonestly diverted the money for starting an engineering college under the Fathima Memorial Trust.

Besides, he had transferred the landed property already mortgaged to the bank in the name of Fathima Memorial Trust without the knowledge of the bank.

When the petition came up, the counsel for CBI, S. Sreekumar, submitted that the accused was a very influential person and would tamper with evidence if he were released on bail.

Besides, the investigation into the case had only begun. The bail petition flatly denied the charges levelled against Mr. Kunju. The court dismissed the petition in the light of the objection raised by the CBI counsel.



A Bench comprising Justice Cyric Joseph and Justice K. Padmanabhan Nair today made it clear that the stay against the Government order staying the Perumatty grama panchayat's order refusing to renew the licence of the Coca-Cola company and also directing it not to resume operation of the company's plant would continue till the final judgement was delivered in the cases relating to the company.

The court has reserved its judgments in the case.

College teacher


Justice Kurian Joseph has directed the State Government and the Mahatma Gandhi University to appoint its nominees to the committee for selection of college teachers constituted by the S.B. College, Changanassery.

It should be done within one month.

The order came on a petition filed by the Principal of the college. According to the petition, no appointment could be made because of the Government's and university's failure to nominate its members.

B.Ed. case

The Government produced before the court the order granting sanction for starting unaided B.Ed. training colleges by 75 managements for the year 2004-05. The order said that the grant of no-objection certificate would be subject to the decision of the High Court. The appeal and other cases pending before the Bench were adjourned to next Friday.

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