Irked with the police for challaning a judge’s official vehicle and for stopping another judge’s vehicle near the railway board building on November 18,the Himachal Pradesh high court on Saturday suspended all permits issued to vehicles (except Governor, Chief Minister, Chief Justice and public utility vehicles) to ply between Shimla Club, lift, CTO building and the railway board building.
SHIMLA: After taking the judicial note of the manner in which official vehicles of two judges were stopped and challaned by police in Shimla, the Himachal Pradesh high court on Saturday suspended all the permits issued to vehicles to ply on the sealed and restricted roads of the tourist town. The court has made it clear that only vehicles of the governor, chief minister, chief justice and public utility vehicles, as allowed under the relevant act, shall ply between Shimla Club to Lift and between Railway Board Building to CTO.
The division bench of Justice Rajiv Sharma and Justice Tarlok Singh Chauhan also said that the chief secretary and director general of police shall be personally responsible to carry out the mandatory directions issued.
While permitting the challan to be taken on record, the court has listed the matter for hearing after four weeks. The HC said that neither additional district magistrate nor public relation officer in Shimla shall issue any permit to ply the vehicles on sealed road or restricted roads.
The permits issued by these authorities shall not be valid till further orders by this court,
The HC had expressed its displeasure for the manner in which a judge’s official vehicle (registration no HP-07B-0103) was challaned on November 18, and official vehicle of another judge bearing registration no (HP-07B-111) was stopped near the Railway Board Building.
The vehicles have been challenged and stopped though exempted from the provisions of the Act causing unnecessary inconvenience and harassment to the honourable judges: The judges are not a special class. They have never asked for any special privilege from the state government,
The HC added that the state government in its own wisdom had exempted their vehicles from possessing passes to ply their vehicles on sealed and restricted roads.
This privilege has been given to the honourable judges taking into consideration the constitutional duties being discharged by them,
the court added.
The state assembly had enacted the Shimla Road Users and Pedestrians (Public Safety and Convenience) Act, 2007, to restore the sanctity of the Mall Road by preventing its use as a thoroughfare and to provide for regulation of vehicular traffic in the interest of public safety and convenience on the sealed and restricted roads. The official vehicles of HC judges are exempted from these restrictions.
According to Section 3 of the Act, all sealed roads shall be sealed to all motorised traffic, except the official and security vehicles attached with the President, the Vice-President, the Prime Minister, the Governor and the Chief Minister. Apart from this, there is a provision that the official and security vehicles attached with the Chief Justice and High Court Judges shall require no pass for plying on the Mall Road and all sealed roads.
Further, the chief secretary of police was asked by HC to file an affidavit in four weeks regarding the steps taken to provide security at the residences of judges keeping the constitutional duties being discharged by them.
Video: Fire in Shimla’s Gumma devours Rs. 40 lakh property
Shimla: In a tragic incident of fire breakout in Gumma area of Kotkhai region in Shimla district on Saturday, about six rooms of a three-story building were lost. The fire brigade saved the two storeys and buildings adjacent to it.
No loss of life was reported, but the estimated loss of assets was initially assessed at about 40 lakh rupees.The owner of the house was identified as Rohit Chauhan.
Rohit’s mother was alone at the house when the fire broke out at about 3 PM. His mother called for help. However, the fire gutted six rooms on the third storey along with all belongings by the time the fire service reached the spot.
The cause of the fire is believed to be a short-circuit.
While the other two stories housed shops, the third one was Rohit’s home.
The district administration has given Rs. 20,000 as a relief to the victim family.
Sirmaur Tragedy: 7-year-old mauled to death by pack of stray dogs
Shimla: In a spine-chilling incident, a pack of about half-a-dozen stray dogs on Saturday attacked and mauled a 7-year-old boy in Amarkot village in Paonta sub-division, Sirmaur district, Himachal Pradesh. As per the initial reports, the brutal attack by the dogs inflicted severe injuries on the head, throat, and neck.
On hearing the cries of the boy, the nearby people rushed to rescue the boy. However, dogs were so aggressive that they bit a couple of these people too.
The boy succumbed to the injuries on the way to the hospital. The boy was identified as Vikki, son of a migrant labour of Uttar Prades. The family was heart-broken after their piece of heart died a horrible death.
The head of the Amarkot village, Rakesh Mehraloo, said repeated complaints were made regarding the growing stray dog menace to the administration. Rakesh told media that some incidents of attack by stray dogs were also reported previously, which were also brought to the attention of the administration.
The administration, however, turned a blind eye towards the complaints and did not take any measure to solve this grieve issue, he said.
If the administration had acted timely, such a horrific incident could have been prevented.
It is pertinent to mention that the state government has also ignored the provision of dog-shelters and showed lackadaisical attitude in regular sterilizing of stray dogs.
Rest, the littering of food waste attract stray dogs and facilitate their reproduction, leading to such a nightmare.
The incident has created panic among the residents about the safety of their children.
Drought-like situation haunts Himachal as no rain, snow in stock, HP DM holds emergency meeting
Shimla: As snow and rain continue to evade the peak winter season in Himachal Pradesh, which is already facing 49 percent post-monsoon rain deficiency, the State Disaster Management called a meeting to embraces for the impact of the drought-like situation in the State.
Today, the maximum day temperature in the capital Shimla was recorded at 19 Degree Celsius while the day was hottest for Una at 27 Degree Celsius.
While a debate over the role of global warming behind erratic changes in the weather can also be heard, the Met Department blamed the western disturbances, which, it said, are not strong this year, hence, there is no precipitation.
The nigh temperature in winters remains close to seven to nine Degrees Celsius, which is four to five notches above from the average temperature witnessed during this time of the year. If the same pattern continues for the next two weeks, then it will not only hit the Rs. 20,000-crore apple industry but the tourist influx too.
The apple growers need moisture and several hundred chilling hours to ensure ample apple crop, and this year they are short of the required chilling hours.
The apple production, which was over 850 metric ton in 2011, has already been reducing.
Other crops like green almonds, tomatoes, pears, apricots, cabbage, cauliflower etc will also be affected due to dry weather.
The hoteliers and ski resorts are witnessing fall in tourist influx as the chances of snowfall are scarce.
Meeting of HP Disaster Mangement
In wake of the drought-like situation, the Principal Secretary (Revenue and Disaster Management) Onkar Chand Sharma held a meeting with senior officers of various departments including the Deputy Commissioners of all 12 districts video conferencing.
Onkar Sharma said the government has analyzed entire rainfall data of all districts. It was found that there is a deficiency of 49 percent in the State (post-monsoon).
The meteorological department has predicted chances of scattered to moderate rainfall during 23-24 January 2018. Except that, the weather is likely to remain mostly dry until January 22 and January 25 onwards.
However, the government said that the state has received ample rainfall during December 2017, therefore, the Rabi crops and the drinking water supply are unaffected so far.
The Disaster Managment will prepare a contingency plan to combat the drought-like situations, said the Secretary.
There are 45 labs of the IPH department for the testing of drinking water supply, he informed.
The Deputy Commissioners were asked to ensure water quality testing randomly up to the subdivision level and arrange water tankers in water-scarce areas as well as fodder for livestock.
All the districts were also directed to take remedial measures to stop contamination of drinking water sources. Besides it, the Secretary directed super chlorination in all districts to prevent water-borne diseases like Jaundice.
Special Secretary, Revenue and Disaster Management Shri D.C. Rana, Director, Indian Meteorological Department Shri Manmohan Singh, Chief Engineer of IPH Department, senior officers from Horticulture and Agriculture also attended the meeting.
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