Tamil Nadu

PIL plea against occupation of Assembly building dismissed

A view of the new Secretariat

A view of the new Secretariat  

The Madras High Court on Thursday dismissed a public interest litigation petition seeking a direction to the Public Works Department that the new Assembly building on Omandurar Estate should not be occupied without getting the completion certificate as per rules.

In his petition, K.R. Ramaswamy, founder-chairman, Tamil Nadu Social Workers Organisation, stated that the multi-storied new Assembly complex was being built in haste. There was no need and urgency to construct the building. There was no notice from either the Centre or Defence authorities to vacate Fort. St. George, which houses the present Secretariat.

The petitioner said there was no urgency that the budget session (starting from March 19) should be conducted in the unfinished complex. When constructing a multi-storied building, the curing time must be strictly followed. This had not been done in the complex. It would not be fair to encourage the government to occupy the unfinished complex.

The building had to be certified finally by statutory authorities before giving electricity, water and drainage connections. Mr. Ramaswamy submitted that he was not interested in preventing the construction of the building. But, it was unnecessary to spend more than Rs.450 crore on the new structure.

When the matter came up before the First Bench, comprising Chief Justice H.L. Gokhale and Justice V. Dhanapalan, the Government Pleader (GP) submitted that presently one section of the Assembly complex had been declared open. It consisted of the ground and first floor where the Assembly session is to be held.

The other sections would not be opened until they were completed.

In its order, the Bench said that in view of the GP's statement, nothing further required to be done. It dismissed the petition.

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Printable version | Apr 6, 2020 5:35:54 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/PIL-plea-against-occupation-of-Assembly-building-dismissed/article16576850.ece

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