Orissa HC relief for medicos of default medical college

Orissa HC relief for medicos of default medical college
Orissa HC relief for medicos of default medical college

In a major relief to 124 students of Sardar Rajas Medical College of Kalahandi, the Orissa High Court today directed the state government to adjust the medicos in other government and private medical colleges to enable them to complete their unfinished course.

Notwithstanding Odisha government’s reluctance, the High Court agreed with the suggestions made by the Medical Council of India (MCI) and directed the government to adjust the medicos under government quota to Burla and Berhampur government medical colleges and those admitted under management quota to be transferred to three private colleges at Bhubaneswar.

A division bench of Justice Indrajit Mahanti and Justice D P Choudhury also asked the state government to complete the transfer processes within two weeks and file an affidavit two weeks thereafter regarding compliance of the High Court order.

The executive council of MCI would ratify the transfer of the students in its meeting scheduled on November 27.

The state government had earlier expressed its reservation over MCI’s suggestion saying that the shift of students of the default medical college to a government medical college at this stage would give unfair advantage to these students and the same would run counter to the “principles of equality” as many students ranked above them in AIPMT were deprived of this advantage.

Soon after pronouncement of the order, medicos present in the court premises expressed happiness.

“We were in a state of confusion for over three months after MCI disallowed the medical college to run the MBBS course from this academic year for lack of infrastructure and faculty. But thanks to the High Court, we are now relieved,” said a medico, who had petitioned the HC.

( Source – PTI )

HC to decide quantum of damage to school wall collapse victim

odisha high courtOrissa High Court has issued notice to the district collector of Keonjhar on a PIL questioning the quantum of compensation to the family of a five-year-old girl student, who died in October 2013 when a government-run school wall caved in.

Asking the Collector to reply in an affidavit, the Division Bench of Chief Justice A K Goel and Justice A K Rath yesterday directed the case to be listed on July 3, 2014 for further hearing.

The petition was filed by the father of the girl, Madhav Soren, seeking compensation of Rs 10 lakh stating that his minor daughter Raimati died when the kitchen wall of the school collapsed.

The school, Kolhabeda Ashram, an institution under the SC and ST development department, is in the Ghasipura block of Keonjhar district.

On the fateful day of October 3, 2013 at about 6.45 AM, Raimati and other students of the Ashram’s hostel were brushing their teeth near the newly constructed kitchen shed. All of a sudden the side wall of the kitchen collapsed. While other students managed to escape, Raimati was crushed under the falling wall, the petition said.

She was immediately rushed to a nearby Community Health Centre, where she was declared brought dead. After being informed by the Head Sevak of the school, Raimati’s father rushed to the hospital.

After the post mortem was completed, the body was taken to her native village Billa Akhupal and cremation was conducted.

The district administration granted Rs 10,000 and subsequently the State Government paid ex-gratia of Rs 50,000. But terming the amount as grossly inadequate, the petitioner moved the High Court demanding compensation of Rs 10 lakhs for failure of the State to ensure the safety of the tribal girl who was in care and custody of the State, when she was in a government-run residential school.

(Source: PTI)

SC sets aside Orissa HC order on iron ore licence to Posco

Orissa high court order has set aside by the Supreme Court which had quashed state government’s petition to allot iron ore licence to South Korean steel major Posco in Khandadhar hills in Sundergarh district for a multi-crore steel plant.

A bench headed by Justice RM Lodha asked the Centre to consider all the objections raised by various parties pertaining to the mega steel plant and take a decision.

The court was hearing cross appeals filed by the state government and a mine and mineral company challenging the Orissa high court’s order on the issue of iron ore mines.

The state government of Orissa and Geomin Minerals & Marketing Limited had challenged the orders of the Orissa high court which has quashed the notification issuing iron ore mining in over 2,500 hectares in the Khandadhar hills in Sundergarh district in Orissa to Posco.

The high court, on July 14, 2010 on the petition of Geomin Minerals, had set aside the state government’s decision.

Geomin Minerals had contended before the high court that it had applied for the prospective licence for Khandadhar iron ore mines much before Posco.

The high court had set aside the notification issued by the state government in 1962 reserving all mineral bearing land for exploitation within Orissa and take a fresh decision on it.

The high court had further said that all mineral bearing land reserved by the state government prior to 1987, without the approval of the central government would not be deemed to have never been reserved.

The Orissa government, which had moved the apex court, on October 29, 2010 on this issue, had contended that the high court could not have quashed the state government’s grant of licence to Posco as it was under section 11 (5) of Mines And Minerals (Development And Regulation) Act, 1957.

The Orissa government had further contended that Section 11 (5) gives power to the state government to “grant a reconnaissance permit, prospecting license or mining lease, as the case may be, to an applicant whose application was received later in preference to an application whose application was received earlier”.

The state government in January 2009 had recommended Posco to the central government for granting prospective licence for Khandadhar iron ore reserves.

This was challenged by Geomin and later 16 other firms who have also applied for mining leases also intervened.

Geomin, in its petition, had submitted before the apex court that the high court “does not take into account the pleading made by it” and “has traversed beyond the pleadings and prayer made by it”.

Pipili rape case: Doctors granted anticipatory bail

The Orissa high court has granted anticipatory bail to two doctors accused of neglecting the treatment of a Dalit girl of Pipili in Pipili rape case, who died at a hospital here last month after she was raped in November last.

 Justice S C Parija yesterday granted the anticipatory bail to D N Moharana, Superintendent of SCB Medical College Hospital here, and Milan Mitra of Capital Hospital of Bhubaneswar.

 Granting anticipatory bail to Moharana and Mitra, the HC directed them to surrender before the court of Pipili and get regular bail.

Parliament passes bill to change name of Orissa

Orissa will hereafter be called ‘Odisha’ and the Oriya language will be known as ‘Odia’ with Parliament giving approval to amendment of the Constitution and also passing the related bill.

The Rajya Sabha passed the Orissa (the Alteration of Name) Bill and adopted the Constitution (113th) Amendment Bill after a brief debate with members from all parties hailing the move as “historic” for people of the state.

Supported by all parties, including the Biju Janta Dal, the Constitution Amendment Bill was adopted by all 169 members present and voting.

Such a bill requires support of at least two-third of members present and voting. Besides, the majority of the strength of the House should be present for voting. The Upper House has a strength of 245 members.

Lok Sabha has already adopted these measures after the Centre received the resolution passed by the state Assembly.

While there was all round support for the measure, BJP and Congress members sought to target Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik charging him with non-performance and heading a government facing scams.

The bills were piloted by Home Minister P Chidambaram . However, the electronic voting system witnessed glitches during the division so much so that even Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s vote was also cast wrongly.

Participating in the debate, members said the name change was the process of decolonisation as Britishers had changed the Indian names of cities and states.

Pyarimohan Mohapatra (BJD) said it was a “great moment” for people of the state and added that with the change of name, they are getting back their pride.

R C Khuntia (Cong) rued that the state, which was prosperous once, has become poverty-stricken. He, however, hoped the change of name will fulfil aspirations of people.

He said the state was facing many scams and corruption charges in the present rule.

Rudra Narayan Pany (BJP) charged the Orissa Chief Minister with non-performance and said Patnaik could not speak even the local language. His colleague Chandan Mitra said, “Orissa regains its prestige and sense of history.”

Mitra said while India’s heritage was revered in many parts of the world, “we have forgotten our own heritage.”

There have been many cities and states that have been renamed after independence. These include Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum), Mumbai (Bombay), Chennai (Madras), Kolkata (Calcutta), Pune (Poona), Kochi (Cochin) and Bangaluru (Banglore).

Orissa moves Supreme Court over POSCO mining

Orissa Friday moved the Supreme Court against an Orissa High Court order that disapproved its grant of permission to South Korean steel major POSCO to mine iron ore in Sundergarh district, a state minister said.

‘The state government has filed a special leave petition in the Supreme Court today (Friday) against the high court order,’ Steel and Mines Minister Raghunath Mohanty told IANS.

‘The state steel and mines department had recommended the Khandadhar mines in favour of POSCO as per the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act. There was no violation,’ he said.

A bench of the Orissa High Court July 14 set aside the state government permission to POSCO for prospecting iron ore in over 2,500 hectares in the Khandadhar hills in the state’s Sundergarh.

Orissa moves apex court against green nod for project

The Orissa government Saturday moved the Supreme Court challenging a go-ahead given by the union environment and forests ministry to an irrigation project in Andhra Pradesh.

The state government feared that the project may lead to flooding of several parts of the state.

The state government’s move comes in the backdrop of the central government justifying the grant of clearance to Polavaram Indira Sagar Project (PISP) on river Godavari in Andhra Pradesh.

The central government earlier told the apex court that the multi-purpose project would irrigate 4.36 hectares of land and provide water to towns and villages. Besides, it would generate 960 MW electricity.

The central government also told the apex court that the probable maximum flood (PMF) estimated for the project was about 50 lakh cusecs and the proposed spillway was capable of disposing of the PMF.

The central government said that the safety of the dam has been checked in this respect.

The state government has contended that the project would inundate tribal villages and the forest land.

A very large number of people in Orissa would be impacted because of the huge embankments constructed by the Andhra Pradesh government for the Polavaram project.

In Bhubaneswar, Orissa Water Resources Secretary S.C. Mohapatra said: “The state government filed a petition in the apex court today (Saturday) seeking cancellation of the forest clearance granted to the project.”

“We are surprised because the environment and forests ministry granted final clearance to the project when the case was still pending in the Supreme Court,” Mohapatra said.

“No assessment on its impact in Orissa was done. Similarly no public hearing was conducted in the villages which would be affected by the project,” he said.

Orissa to move apex court over POSCO project

Orissa will move the Supreme Court against a high court order disapproving its grant of permission to South Korean steel major POSCO to prospect for iron ore in Sundergarh district, an official said Saturday.

A bench of the Orissa High Court July 14 set aside the permission granted to POSCO last year for prospecting iron ore in over 2,500 hectares in the Khandadhar hills in Sundergarh.

“We have decided to appeal the Supreme Court against the high court order. We will file a petition in two-three weeks time,” a senior government official told IANS.

POSCO had signed a memorandum of understanding June 22, 2005 for a 12 million-tonne steel plant near the port town of Paradip, some 100 km from here, with an investment of $12 billion – the largest foreign direct investment in India.

The project, scheduled to be set up by 2016, has been delayed due to various reasons, including protests by local residents against land acquisition.

Last year, the state government recommended POSCO India to the central government for prospecting the iron ore rich area of Khandadhar hills despite objections by some local companies.

The division bench of the high court comprising Justice B.P. Das and B.P. Ray directed the state government to re-consider its recommendation.

They delivered the verdict in response to a petition filed by Geomin Minerals and Marketing Pvt Ltd, one of the several companies that had applied for a share in the Khandadhar mines’ resources.

Geomin had challenged the government decision, claiming that it had made the first application for a mining lease in the area way back in August 1991 which was not considered.

The court had also directed the state government to dispose all pending applications of the petitioner within four months.

Court orders fresh poll in Orissa assembly constituency

The Orissa High Court Wednesday ordered a fresh poll in the state’s Athgarh assembly constituency, a lawyer said.

Justice R.N Biswal passed the order at Cuttack, some 26 km from here, in response to a petition by senior ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) leader and former state minister Ranendra Pratap Swain, challenging the rejection of his nomination papers by a returning officer.

Swain had filed nomination papers as a BJD candidate seeking election to the state assembly from the Athgarh constituency in Cuttack district in 2009.

His petition, filed in the high court in July 2009, alleged that the returning officer at Athgarh illegally cancelled his nomination papers and he could not contest the election.

“The Orissa High Court set aside the order of the returning officer. It ordered a re-poll in view of the casual vacancy that arose because of the voidable election of Ramesh Rout, an independent candidate,” Swain’s lawyer Pitambar Acharya said.

Swain, who was elected to the state assembly from the same constituency for four consecutive terms from 1990 to 2009, said: “It was a historical judgment. The court has given justice to me.”

Swain was state science and technology minister 2000-2002, sports and youth service minister 2000-2004 and housing minister 2002-2004.

Rout, who had won the election as an independent with the support of the BJD, said he will move the Supreme Court against the judgment.