Remove illegal hoardings, flags from roadside within 15 days: HC
Kochi: The Kerala High Court has ordered to remove the hoardings, banners and flags illegally erected on the roadside by encroaching the footpaths and dividers on roads across the state. The court has strictly directed that illegal hoardings, flags and banners which pose threat to the passengers should be removed within 15 days.
Justice Devan Ramachandran directed the state police chief to issue an order warning the officials that action will be taken against them under police act for any lapses to implement the court order.
The court issued the strict order after observing that the officials have not implemented the previous orders banning hoardings, banners and flags on roadside.
The court has been considering the case related to this since the last two years. The court pointed out that it had ordered to remove not only the illegal hoardings but also the flags and banners which pose threat to the passengers on road.
Earlier also the court had directed DGP to issue an order to immediately remove illegal hoardings, flags etc and warn stern action against officials for any lapses. But the government informed the court the DGP is not obliged to issue such an order as it does not come under his powers. Following this, the court criticised the government.
Noticing various acts including Kerala land conservancy act, Municipality panchayat raj act, Kerala police act, IPC and Kerala Highway protection act, the court opined that police is obliged to implement the order. The court also considered amicus curiae report regarding the matter.
No footpaths in the state is safe. The government is not taking action to remove the hoardings and boards even after accepting it is illegal to erect it. Hence, those who erect the hoardings and flags on roadside are not afraid to continue it. The court observed that if the government impose a huge penalty for erecting the hoardings and flags, this illegal practice will be reduced.