UP property damage regulation: Tribunal can hear ex parte, cannot be questioned

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Written by Apurva Vishwanath
, Maulshree Seth
| Lucknow, New Delhi |

Updated: March 16, 2020, 7:06:44 am

up protests, protesting property damage compensation, caa protests up, Yogi Adityanath, Yogi Adityanath on caa protest, UP Horten Anti CAA, UP Horten CAA protests, Lucknow Horten Anti Caa demonstrators, UP Horten Anti Caa demonstrators, sc on UP Horten, UP law hoarding Anti-Caa protesters Protester set fire to a police vehicle when anti-CAA protests in Lucknow took a violent turn. (Express photo by Vishal Srivastav / file)

Under the new Uttar Pradesh reparation for damage to the public and private property laws Announced on Sunday by Governor Anandiben Patel, extensive powers have been conferred on a new claim court, including, if necessary, ex parte compensation, ie without hearing the person accused of vandalism. The regulation also provides that the compensation granted by the tribunal is final and cannot be challenged in a civil court.

The regulation provides that one or more harm courts will be set up to “examine the damage caused (in the event of protests) and provide compensation” and increase the “cost of action” taken by the police and administration to prevent damage to the public cover properties.

The ordinance also puts the burden of proof that one has no “connection” with a protest, Hartal, strike, bandh, riot or public turmoil – in which any destruction of public or private property has been caused – which fails to become individual characteristics confiscated.

Significantly, the regulation states that the principle of absolute legal liability applies as soon as “the connection to the event that caused the damage is established”. However, the law does not specify what the “context” would look like.

Good luck charms anti-Caa protesters, UP hoarding Anti-Caa protesters, sc on UP hoarding, UP law hoarding anti-Caa protesters HC ordered the UP government to remove the hoarding. (File photo)

According to Section 21 (2), the new law stipulates that liability is borne by the “actual perpetrators of the crime”, those who “instigate” or “incite” the crime would share the liability in accordance with the decision of the claims court. However, the law does not discuss which act constitutes instigation or instigation.

The regulation was announced four days after the Supreme Court declined that stay Order of the Allahabad High Court of March 9th for the removal of the state government Name and sample posters Display photos and names of suspected rioters who were involved in property damage during the anti-CAA protests in December last year.


Law can face SC test

The timing of the ordinance is important as it was announced four days after the SC refused to maintain the Allahabad HC order and one day before the HC deadline to remove the state government’s name and record cards from suspected rioters. It remains to be seen whether the state’s decision will pass the SC test.

According to the ordinance, the tribunal is headed by a retired district judge appointed by the state government and may include a member who is an official with the rank of additional commissioner. The law allows for multiple tribunals to be set up for a single event to ensure that the process is “preferably completed within three months” and allows the tribunal to appoint an assessor “who is technically qualified to deal with such damage from one of them the state government appointed body to evaluate ”.

The court, according to the law, may use a “summary procedure” at its discretion and has the powers of a civil court to evaluate evidence and enforce the presence of witnesses.

While the law provides that criminal proceedings can be brought against the same defendant in parallel with the application process, it prevents any civil court from interfering with the guidelines of the claims court.

READ | Lucknow: Support messages appear on posters of anti-CAA demonstrators

The application for damages under Section 3 of the Ordinance can be initiated by a police officer based on an initial information report (FIR) about the incident. The regulation makes it possible to add all persons named in an FIR as “respondents”. for the right to compensation.

The new law makes it clear that the district judge or police commissioner will immediately file a “claim for compensation” upon receipt of the district official’s report. This should preferably be done within three months, the regulation says. While the district collector or officer reviews the damage and sends its report to the government on a quarterly basis, private property owners whose property was damaged during the protests can also file claims for compensation.

If the respondent “does not appear” under section 13 of the regulation, the court will go “ex parte” and the court will add property and instruct the authorities to generally publish the name, address and photo with a warning to the public in order not to buy the respondent’s property ”.

The regulation also gives authorities the power to publish such information.

While the Allahabad High Court set a deadline of March 16 for the removal of the billboards, he had said, “Upon request, the learned advocate general could not satisfy us why there are fewer people on banners in the Uttar Pradesh state of Lakhs by defendants who are exposed to serious charges related to the commission of criminal offenses whose personal information has not been released. In fact, the placement of personal data of selected individuals reflects the colorable exercise of powers by the executive, ”the Supreme Court said and added,“ This is not a question of personal injury done to those whose personal details are shown in the banner , but the violation of the valuable constitutional value and its shameless representation by the administration. “

The ordinance was announced to the High Court a day before March 16 to allow the state to reduce hoarding.

When the state government hastily relocated the Supreme Court against the Supreme Court ruling, the Supreme Court also questioned whether such banners could be affixed without a law allowing state power to do so.

The regulation authorizes the court to act ex parte if the respondent does not appear, but does not take into account exceptions such as the failure to deliver the communication to the respondent.

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