High-Stakes Move: Uttarakhand High Court Relocation Hits Supreme Court

In a notable turn of events, the decision of the Uttarakhand High Court to consider relocating from Nainital has been contested in the Supreme Court of India. The Uttarakhand Bar Association has moved to secure an injunction against the decision, raising environmental apprehensions and procedural irregularities.

Here’s the full story:

  • The Uttarakhand High Court hinted at relocating its bench from Nainital to Gaulapar.
  • The proposed site in Gaulapar is surrounded by dense forests, raising concerns about tree felling for construction, a move previously disapproved by the Court.
  • The Bar Association opposes the relocation, citing environmental damage and logistical complications due to the remote location of the new site.
  • Lawyers argue that extensive tree cutting would contradict efforts to preserve the environment in the area.
  • The shift may impact designated “freeze zones,” areas restricted for land transactions to prevent speculative trading and unauthorized construction.
  • Gaulapar was declared a developmental region by the Uttarakhand government, extending the freeze zone to protect the area.
  • Despite suggestions for a public referendum on the relocation, protests from the legal community persist as the Supreme Court’s annual recess approaches.
  • The Supreme Court’s decision on the appeal will not only influence Uttarakhand’s judicial framework but also establish precedents for infrastructural changes regarding environmental and public policy considerations in India.

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About the Author: Payal Singh