HC notices to GoI, J&K govt for seeking response on compensation to victims of Tosmaidan firing range

HC notices to GoI, J&K govt for seeking response on compensation to victims of Tosmaidan firing range

Srinagar: The High Court of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh has issued notices to the Government of India and J&K government to file their responses to a litigation seeking implementation of a court order for compensation to the families of the victims of Tosamaidan firing range.

The court recorded that one of the reliefs claimed in the present writ petition is regard implementation of the final order passed in PIL No.23/2017 wherein court had directed authorities to conduct a survey in the area and compensate victim families who have incurred loss of life, injuries or damage to their properties due to unexploded shells and artillery firing.

The Court of Chief Justice Pankaj Mithal and Justice Sanjay Dhar said, “Initiation of contempt proceedings for not following the said order is one remedy but the fact remains that the orders passed by the Court have to be implemented.”

“In view of the above, we issue notice to all the respondents. Let all the respondents file their response within six weeks. List on 18th October, 2021,” Court directed.

Earlier, Tosamaidan Bachao front through its President Dr Sheikh Ghulam Rasool filed litigation through Counsel Mohammad Altaf Khan seeking attention of the court for the protection of rights of general public living in and around Tosa Maidan.

The petitioner states that the respondents have failed to conduct the military exercises and artillery practices in adherence with law and thereby caused tremendous suffering to the people living in the vicinity.

“Many people have lost their lives and hundreds have been injured most of them permanently disabled an incapacitated for life. The loss has not even been documented properly and no survey has ever been conducted to assess the actual loss suffered by the area and the people in terms of death and disability and loss of livelihood,” petition said.

It also mentions that the loss and degradation caused to the forests, water bodies, wildlife, natural environment and eco-sensitive zones has neither been assessed nor documented with a submission that the earlier PIL was filed however, even after passing of orders by this court nothing has changed in the area.

“Moreover, some new facts and challenges have come up that need to be dealt with by this court and bring justice and peace to the entire area,” petitioner claims.

For the redressal of grievance of the public at large, the petitioner sought adequate compensation in favour of the families of deceased persons, disabled, handicapped or impaired due to the negligence of respondent authorities.

Moreover, also seeking a humane system to protect forests, wildlife, and water bodies and preventing these violations in future.

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