Remove Noida chairman by Feb 1: HC to UP

The Allahabad High Court on Monday directed Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary Javed Usmani and the other respondents to comply with its November 8, 2012, order — in which Noida Chairman Rakesh Bahadur and Chief Executive Officer Sanjeev Saran were directed to be removed immediately — by February 1 or be present in the court to explain the delay.

The state government had removed Saran on January 17, but Bahadur continues to hold the post.

Hearing two contempt petitions, filed by Madhav Samaj Nirman Samiti (MSNS) and Nitin Deshwal, a single-judge bench of Justice Vikram Nath said: "By the said date (February 1) either some interim protection is provided by the division bench or the review application itself is disposed of in favour of the state, failing which the opposite parties shall ensure compliance of the directions (dated November 8, 2012) and file an appropriate affidavit of compliance or else remain present before this court."

Usmani, a few other government officials, Bahadur and Saran have been made opposite parties in the matter. "Even though Saran was removed from his post last week, our argument is that he remained in his post for well over two months, which was in violation of the High Court's November 8 order," M D Singh Shekhar, counsel for MSNS, said.

The court passed the order after taking into account the arguments of the state and the petitioners. The state government, represented by the advocate general, argued that the hearing on the contempt petition be deferred for a couple of days as a division bench was hearing the review application filed against the November 8 order. The hearing of the review application was fixed for January 29, the court was informed.

The petitioners, however, strongly opposed the argument. Shekhar said the parties facing contempt petition have so far not been able to explain the delay in complying with the November 8 order. He also argued that merely the fact that a review application on an order is in process cannot be a handle for the state government for not complying with the orders.

... contd.

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