Khanabal Sumo Stand Relocation Must For Security: Govt

Srinagar, Mar 1: Jammu and Kashmir High Court has asked government to ensure relocation of Sumo Stand Khanabal Anantnag and rehabilitation of the concerned while taking care of the Security of J&K and law and order problem.

“The Court has to place the cause of justice by ensuring that the rights of the parties does not got defeated, but in the present case, the respondents (officials) while taking care of the Security of the Union Territory of J&K, and law and order problem have also to ensure re-location and rehabilitation of the petitioners association (M/S Sumo Taxi Stand and Anr), therefore, there is no issue of defeating the cause of justice and rights of petitioners association,” a bench of Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey said.

The court directed the administration to consider renewal of the registration of the Sumo Stand in tune with the mandate of the law, rules and policy of the Government.

“While doing so, the respondents (officials) shall ensure rehabilitation of the petitioners’ association at identified place as per their stand taken in the affidavit.”

The court also directed the officials to ensure that the Association because of re-location does not suffer their business. It ordered that government should ensure plying of the vehicles from the Sumo Stand as identified by the officials.

The direction by the court followed submissions by Senior additional advocate general that there are reasons with the officials to re-locate the Sumo Stand at a distance of 200 Meters from the present place (Khanabal). He said the renewal of registration shall be considered for re-located place.

He reiterated that the re-location of the Sumo Stand has reference to the security reasons. The present place is ‘not feasible’ as it has potential of security threat, not only to the general public but also to the visitors who visit the Amarnath pilgrims during the Yatra period. He also submitted that the security of the place cannot be compromised, therefore, the Association have to shift to the identified place on Anantnag-Srinagar road about 200 meters away from the present location, which is being developed and readied to rehabilitate the Sumo drivers.

He submitted that the District Development commissioner has sanctioned funds to the tune of Rs. 6.00 lakhs for taking up works for developing the alternative stand. He officials have already balanced the interest of the security and the interest of the livelihood of the association, he added. gns

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