HC makes itself a respondent in Cubbon Park annexe case

HC makes itself a respondent in Cubbon Park annexe case

View of High Court inside Cubbon Park, in Bengaluru on Thursday. Photo/ B H Shivakumar

Chief Justice Abhay S Oka directed that the Karnataka High Court be made a respondent in the public interest litigation against the proposed construction of the seven-storey annexe of the court in Cubbon Park.

A division bench of Chief Justice Oka and Justice Pradeep Singh Yerur were hearing a PIL filed by the Cubbon Park Walkers’ Association on Monday.

The chief justice asked the advocate for the petitioner why he didn’t make the high court a respondent in the matter.

The petitioner’s advocate replied that they need time to decide on this.

The judge insisted that it was better to make the addition immediately.

The petitioner’s advocate then submitted to the court that he was told that the government was reconsidering the decision to construct the annexe building.

The court asked what was the source of the information. Replying to this, the advocate said the information was “from reliable sources”.

In his reply, Chief Justice Oka told the petitioner that the high court shall be made a respondent and that only then would the truth come out.

The high court then issued a notice to the state government and adjourned the matter to December 5.

However, the chief justice told the petitioner, “You are protesting on this matter outside while your petition is pending before the court. You should choose one proper way to seek justice. We are not stopping you from agitating. But you should rely on one thing,” he said.

The petitioner’s advocate clarified that they were not protesting. “We are only creating awareness,” he added.

The case

The petitioner has contended that the proposal to build the seven-storey annexe building in Cubbon Park was illegal. The petition also opposes the demolition of the old State Election Commissioner’s office, considered a heritage building.

The proposed construction will be a threat to the historical Cubbon Park and important structures like Vidhana Soudha, Raj Bhavan and High Court.

Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox

Check out all newsletters

Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox