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Kerala bureaucrat told to plant 100 trees as punishment for ignoring court order

The HC order follows a plea by a Kollam-based firm, SS Chemicals, alleging the state industries department had not implemented the court’s order in a ten-year-old matter.

Kerala bureaucrat told to plant 100 trees as punishment for ignoring court order
A senior officer of the Kerala government has been ordered to plant 100 saplings as punishment by the Kerala High Court.(HT Photo/Representative)

The Kerala High Court on Friday ordered the state industries director to plant 100 trees for failing to comply with its earlier directives and asked the forest ministry to find a suitable place for planting the saplings.

The HC order follows a plea by a Kollam-based firm, SS Chemicals, alleging the state industries department had not implemented the court’s order in a ten-year-old matter.

SS Chemicals had first moved the court ten years ago to fix anomalies in its sales tax and was awarded a favourable verdict by the High Court. The firm approached the court again two years ago saying its directives were yet to be followed by the concerned department.

The court expressed serious concerns over the department’s failure to implement its orders.

Initially, Justice Amit Raval ordered the industries director to serve in a Leprosy hospital in the state, but later changed it after being informed of the absence of any Leprosy hospital in the state. The judge then directed K Biju to plant at least 100 saplings and correct the anomalies at the earliest and report back to the court.

In a similar judgment last year, the Supreme Court had ordered a 32-year-old doctor from West Bengal, who was accused of attempting a murder at the age of 16, to plant 100 trees in a year. Similarly, in another case, the Delhi High Court had ordered a couple to plant 100 trees for employing a minor for household works last year.

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