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HC asks Centre to provide security to retired Judges

Court disposes of case related to ban on bandh, onus on State Govt to enforce order

SHILLONG: The High Court of Meghalaya disposed of the order banning bandh issued on May 27 this year asking the State government to enforce it, while the Court also wanted the union Home Ministry to file an affidavit before January 4 regarding protection to be provided to the retired Judges.
“To sum up the legal position, we reiterate that as the order dated May 27, 2015 imposing ban on bandh culture in the State of Meghalaya has been affirmed by the Apex Court, therefore, the directions as provided in the order have to be enforced and obeyed as the law of the land. Thus this case as regards monitoring the implementation of the order dated May 27, 2015 is closed and disposed of,” the Court said in its recent order.
Later, in the November 2 order related to AFSPA following the spate of kidnappings and killings in Garo Hills, the High Court had referred to the Chief Justice and Judges of the High Court who are also getting veiled threats that they would have to face the consequence after their retirement.
“It may not be proper for us to say anything about our security which is, for the present, being looked after by the State. Generally, we put all such anonymous letters       into shredders but since two of us are to lay our office in January and February, 2016 and third one in March, 2019, and one cannot claim to be fully safe and secured in the wake of incident of kidnapping of the BDO, brother-in-law of the Superintendent of Police, who is in-charge of High Court security, we expect the Central government to give its response on this issue as well”, the Court had observed.
Referring to the matter, the High Court in the recent order said that till date, there was no response from the union Home Ministry. “Therefore, we direct the Union of India to file affidavit after doing categorization of security cover on permanent basis for the members of the Full Bench (the Chief Justice and two Judges) so that as and when there is a request for security, it can be provided without procedural delay as per such category by the Central government or the State, as the case may be at the place of residence of the Chief Justice and the Judges after their retirement”.
According to the High Court, this direction is required particularly for the fact and reason that the “Judges working in North East and dealing with the cases of insurgents over there are differently placed than the Judges of other parts of the country from the security point of view,” the order said.
As the Court will remain closed for a long winter vacation, the matter will be listed before the Division Bench available on January 4 for appropriate orders,” the order stated.

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