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“My car was entering court and cows blocked it:” Gujarat HC Chief Justice on stray cattle menace

A Division Bench of Chief Justice (CJ) Aravind Kumar and Justice AJ Shastri remarked how the problem has even affected the Gujarat High Court, with a dozen cows blocking the road to its premises.

CJ Kumar narrated his personal ordeal when his car was blocked by cows on Monday when entering the High Court premises.

“My car was entering the Court today and about 10-12 cows had blocked the road. Even the police couldn’t remove it by whistling,” he said.

The Court was hearing a contempt petition over non-compliance with the directions contained in its 2018 judgement in a public interest litigation, regarding the poor quality of roads in the State, and the cattle menace and parking problems in Ahmedabad.

The contempt petition was filed by Mustak Hussain Mehndi Hussain Kadri through advocate Amit Panchal.

The petition mentioned that the different directions given by the Court in 2018, with respect to proper rehabilitation of stray cattle, better roads and traffic injunctions, were not complied with till date.

The counsel for the petitioner stated that the Ahmedabad Police Commissioner has issued a notification to address the issue, and the same for areas outside of Ahmedabad will have to be looked into by the the municipal corporations and State government

Government pleader Manisha Lavkumar submitted that action had been taken under the Cattle Trespass Act and the Bombay Police Act.

“We have also allotted cattle-free zones, in heavy vehicular traffic areas,” Lavkumar said.

The Court, however, said that the implementation of the law has been lax.

“The legislation has been done but the enforcement has not come through,” the Bench said.

The Court, therefore, mooted involving legal services authority to ensure the implementation of the law.

“In such circumstances we will have to rope in the legal services authority to discharge these tasks and subsequently ask them to file a report. They can get feedback from NGOs and individuals and also open a toll-free telephone booth or ‘e-plaza’, where anybody can apprise them that this is happening along with photographs of that area. Then you can consider on a case-to-case basis.”

The matter was listed for further hearing on Wednesday.

Source: Barandbench

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