Uttarakhand High court asks govt to find suitable site for its relocation out of Nainital

The bench asked the Chief Secretary to select a suitable place for the High Court within a month.

Published - May 11, 2024 05:55 pm IST - Nainital

The Uttarakhand High Court has asked the state government to find within a month a suitable place to shift its premises out of Nainital saying its relocation is in larger public interest.

"Considering the larger public interest, it is necessary to shift the High Court from Nainital," a division bench of the high court comprising Chief Justice Ritu Bahri and Justice Rakesh Kumar Thapliyal said on Friday.

The bench asked the Chief Secretary to select a suitable place for the High Court within a month. It also directed the Registrar General to create a portal to take suggestions from advocates and the general public on the issue.

The next hearing in the matter has been scheduled for June 25.

On the state government's earlier proposal for shifting the High Court to Gaulapar in Haldwani, the high court observed that the land earmarked for the purpose had 75 per cent forest cover and construction in the area would lead to deforestation.

The high court also made a few recommendations for the kind of land required for its relocation and facilities, including proper accommodation for judges, judicial officers, staff and court rooms.

The selected area must have adequate space for facilities such as chambers, canteen, parking and conference hall to accommodate at least 7,000 lawyers, the bench said.

The area should be near a place which has good medical facilities and good connectivity, it added.

The Uttarakhand High Court had directed the state last week to explore the possibility of moving a bench of it to Indian Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Limited, Rishikesh which is now closed but has a sprawling campus spread over hundreds of acres on which former IDPL employees have their residences.

The high court's decision to shift its premises has drawn a lot of resistance by the bar association.

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