Allahabad HC Stays Notice to Compensate Public Damage From Anti-CAA Protester

A petitioner from Kanpur, to whom the UP Government had served recovery notice to compensate for the damage caused to public property during anti-CAA protests, has been granted ad-interim protection by the High court of Allahabad.

Mohammad Faizan, the petitioner was accused of destroying public properties during the anti CAA protests of December 2019.

The division bench of Justice Pankaj Naqvi and Justice Saurabh Shyam Shamshery stayed the recovery notice issued by the Additional District Magistrate, on the grounds that the legality of such notices was already under question before the Apex Court.

Parwaiz Arif Titu Vs. The State of UP. , a writ petition, challenging such recovery notices, is currently being examined by a division bench of SC.

Challenging the recovery notice, Advocate Ali Zaidi appearing for the petitioner pleaded that the notice was issued by an ADM whereas in In Re: Destruction of Public and Private Properties v. Govt. of Appellant, (2009) 5 SCC 212, the Supreme Court had unequivocally provided that such an order can be issued only by a serving or retired high court judge or retired district judge as ‘claims commissioner’.

“We are of the view that the Rules under which impugned notice has been issued is under challenge before the Apex Court, therefore the ends of justice demand that the effect and operation of the impugned notice are put in abeyance till the issue is determined by the Apex Court. Till the next date of listing the effect/operation of the notice dated 04.01.2020 shall remain stayed. This ad interim protection is subject to the final outcome of the order of the Hon’ble Apex Court in Writ Petition (Civil) No. 55/2020,” the order read.

The Lucknow High Court had dismissed a petition challenging such notices earlier this week, citing pendency of the Supreme Court proceedings.

The State Government has been directed by the High Court to file a counter-affidavit within a month. The court has listed this case to April 20, 2020, for further consideration. The case will be heard subject to the result of the proceedings before the SC.

Angel Mary Aju

Law student at Government Law College, Mumbai.
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