Gujarat HC: Not Duty of Courts to Order State to Construct Hospitals, Schools, Sports Facilities

Gujarat High Court Law insider

Tanisha Rana

Published on: October 6, 2022 at 22:47 IST

The Gujarat High Court said on Thursday that it was not the role of the courts to order the construction of hospitals, schools, sports facilities, etc. by the State.

The remark was made by a division bench led by Chief Justice Aravind Kumar and Justice Ashutosh Shastri during a PIL hearing underlining the fact that officials in Anand district have yet to build a civil hospital despite a collector’s orders from 2016 being in effect.

“It isn’t our duty to say anything to the State on this. We cannot tell them (State authorities) to build schools, hospitals, swimming pools or even sports complexes. It is for them to decide depending on the available resources,”  Chief Justice Kumar remarked.

The CJ also brought up the fact that numerous state officials operate their offices out of rented space.

“Only a decision is not enough…they even need money to construct something. Some of the offices of Malmatadars, some assistant collectors are run from rented premises because of non-availability of resources.”

“In fact, government’s own offices are running from rented premises because they don’t have resources. They might have land, but don’t have buildings,”  he observed.

The petitioner’s attorney told the bench that although though Anand district was established in 1997, over 25 years ago, it still lacks a civil hospital.

He emphasised that the site that was to be used for the hospital’s development is empty despite the collector’s directives.

The Bench now wanted to hear if there had been any budgetary funding set up for the hospital in question.

“Let us know if any budgetary allocation was made or if some budget for the same was approved by the State government,”  the Bench said.

The attorney retorted that he would return with information on the following court date.

The site in question was leased for 99 years, and the State’s attorney informed the Bench that a lawsuit over its ownership is still underway.

The hearing came to a conclusion, and the Court gave notice to the State and the relevant agencies while keeping the case on the calendar for a hearing on November 19.

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