R-Day on Nov 17: HC seeks govt reply by Saturday

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir High Court Monday issued fresh notice to government on a plea seeking directions to authorities for celebrating November 17 as Republic Day in the state.
Hearing an application filed by retired Forest Officer Abdul Qayoom Khan, a bench of Justice Hasnain Massodi asked the government to file response by Saturday (November 15).
In his plea, the 62-year-old officer has submitted that government has not filed any reply to his petition despite directions from the court in March this year.
Besides celebrating the Republic Day, Khan also seeks directions for discharging lawful obligation by all the constitutional and other authorities regarding the use of state’s own flag.
In support of celebrating November 17 as Republic Day, Khan says that it was the day when people of the state adopted and enacted the Constitution.
Khan, a resident of Rajbagh Srinagar, has contended that non-furling or non-hoisting of the flag by constitutional authorities including Governor, High Court judges, cabinet and state ministers in the state constitutes breach of Constitution and law as is in vogue in the J&K—an autonomous state having a separate constitution.
“By not caring to unfurl and hoist the State Flag by the constitutional authorities, (my) feelings are hurt apart from the fact that it constitutes serious breach of the provisions of law.”
As per Article 144 of constitution, the state flag should be rectangular in shape and red in colour with three equidistant vertical strips of equal width next to the staff and a white plough in the middle with handle facing the strips.
“The oath to which constitutional authorities have to subscribe also provides that the constitutional authorities shall bear true faith and elegance to the Constitution of the state.”
Khan has claimed that the state flag is not hoisted on the various buildings including High Court nor on the official vehicles used by the constitutional authorities.
“Having regard to J&K Prevention of Insult to State Hounors Act, non-use of the State flag by the constitutional authorities amounts to the contempt.”