JAMMU, Jan 30: In a Public Interest Litigation filed by Viklang Chattra Trust seeking better care of old age persons, Division Bench of the State High Court comprising Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Tashi Rabstan today issued several directions to the respondents.
After hearing Advocate Sumit Nayyar for the PIL, DB observed, “in purported compliance of order dated 12th November, 2018, a status report has been filed by the Department of Social Welfare showing the details of the land for setting up old age homes and the financial status thereof”.
“This tabulation is hopelessly incomplete, inasmuch as, a reference is made that transfer of land is under process. The report is dated 24th December, 2018 and we are already at the end of the month of January, 2019. Furthermore, a reference is made in the report dated 24th December, 2018 to allocation of funds, no date for release or proposed release has been set out”, the DB observed, adding “in none of the six homes mentioned, the date of completion of the project has been set out”.
DB further observed, “the matter under consideration is a very important matter which needs to be critically monitored. The respondents shall file a fresh status report giving us stage-wise date of completion of the work of transfer of land as well as the construction of old age homes. The respondents shall also inform regarding disbursement of pensions under various Government schemes to the old aged”.
“In our order dated 12th November, 2018, we have noted centrally sponsored schemes for poor persons living below poverty line and issued notice to the J&K Legal Services Authority through its Member-Secretary to submit a report regarding the working thereof. The record does not disclose as to whether notice was sent to the Member-Secretary, J&KSLSA”, the DB said, adding “we have also noted the benefits of day care centres for the old as have been maintained in other areas”.
The DB directed Registry to forthwith issue notice to the Member-Secretary, J&K State Legal Services Authority, who as well as the Secretaries, Districts Legal Services Authorities shall ensure compliance of order dated 12th November, 2018. “Once a report regarding the time line of the completion of the construction of the old age homes is received, we propose to appoint Secretaries, District Legal Services Authorities as nodal officers to monitor the working of these timelines”, the DB added.