Staff Reporter

The Bill provides for jail up to one year, fine up to 50,000

NEW DELHI: The Centre informed the Delhi High Court on Wednesday that it had approved a Delhi Government proposal to enact a new law to replace the West Bengal Prevention of Defacement of Property Act.

The Delhi Government had introduced a Bill to this effect in the State Assembly last year. The Centre submitted before a Division Bench comprising Justice T. S. Thakur and Justice Aruna Suresh that the State Government had sought to enact a new law saying that the existing Act was found to be insufficient to deal with defacement of properties in the Capital.

The Bill has a provision for imprisonment up to for one year and fine up to Rs.50,000 in case of violation of the Act.

The Bench was hearing a public interest litigation seeking directions to the Delhi Government to take action against people and organisations that deface public properties by sticking posters, bills and writing slogans on them.Petitioner advocate Monica Arora in her submission said the problem did not lie with the law but the authorities concerned not taking action against the culprits.

The High Court had in 2004 passed orders saying that defacement of public property was a cognizable offence and the police should register cases and take action on their own if they found violation of the law that protected public property from defacement.

The Bench had further directed that the Assistant Commissioners of Police and Station House Officers would be held liable for violation of the law.