HC Imposes Cost of Rs 5 Lakh on Karnataka Govt for Non-compliance of Order

The High Court of Karnataka has imposed a cost of Rs five lakh on the state government for failing to comply with an order of the court for over three years.

The division bench of Chief Justice Prasanna B Varale and Justice Krishna S Dixit was hearing a civil contempt of court petition.

The petition alleged that the State failed to follow a three-and-half-year-old HC order directing the government to implement wage parity between government and government-aided educational institutions.

Taking a serious exception to the inaction, the HC imposed the cost on six officers of the Primary and Secondary Education Department and directed that it should be recovered within two weeks.

The court rejected the contention of the government advocate seeking two weeks to implement the court’s earlier order.

Wondering if the state government was indulging in comedy,’ the HC asked why it had not acted on the order for three-and-a-half years.

The HC observed that the government seems to be unaware of what the common people opine about the courts.

The Court said that people do not approach the courts unnecessarily and they come to courts only when they have no option left. In such a situation, an order of the High Court has not been followed by the government, it added.

The original petition was filed by one V A Nagamma who had retired as a second division assistant librarian from the Sir M Vishveshwaraya High School, an aided institution, in Konena Agrahara.

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She had sought wages on par with the librarian grade similar to the over 250 second division librarians in government institutions.

A single judge bench had allowed her petition and directed the State to grant her wage parity.

Alleging that the order has not been followed, she filed a civil contempt petition.

The Division Bench which heard her contempt plea had given time to the government to comply.

On Tuesday, when the government sought more time, the HC rejected the submission and imposed the cost.

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