Cricket body row: Court asks Himachal to file reply

IANS| Updated: Nov 28, 2013, 19:37 PM IST

Shimla: The Himachal Pradesh High Court Thursday directed the state to file its objections to the revision petitions of the state cricket body and its president, pleading to make Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh and three government officials party in a land row case.

Hearing the petitions of the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) and its president Anurag Thakur, a division bench of acting Chief Justice Mansoor Ahmad Mir and Justice Kuldip Singh asked the state to file objections within three weeks.

The court will now hear the matter Dec 19.

The HPCA has sought to place on record certain additional documents, including copy of the minutes of the meeting of its board of directors Nov 11, clippings of the news items and a copy of the remarks dated March 3, 2005, made in the visitors` book by BCCI vice president Rajeev Shukla.

One of the petitioners has sought the inclusion of Deputy Inspector General of Police Sanjay Kumar, Kangra Deputy Commissioner C. Paulrasu and Superintendent of Police Balbir Thakur as respondents.

The petitioners alleged that the entire government machinery under the influence of the chief minister, in a midnight swoop on Oct 26, forcibly evicted the HPCA from its stadia, principally the picturesque Dharamsala stadium.

Advocate General Sharvan Dogra informed the court that the writ has become infructuous as the government has withdrawn its earlier order of cancellation of the land leases of the HPCA.

The cabinet Nov 18 withdrew its Oct 26 decision to cancel the land leased to the HPCA and take over its assets.

The leases were cancelled on the plea that the HPCA has violated the terms and conditions by converting itself from a society to a company without informing the government.

Earlier in the case, the high court indicted the government for forcible eviction of the HPCA from its stadia and ordered restoration of possession to it.

The court then ordered status quo ante with respect to the cabinet decision taking over the properties.

"The orders of forcible dispossession are against law, constitutional guarantee and obligations of the state to its citizens as a person in settled possession of a premises cannot be dispossessed by an executive fiat, even though he can be stated as a trespasser," the bench had observed.