Karnataka HC
Karnataka HC
Litigation News

State can't be a silent spectator, provide compensation to migrants whose huts were burned down: Karnataka HC to state government

Rintu Mariam Biju

The Karnataka High Court today directed the state government to pay some amount as compensation to those migrants in Bangalore whose huts were burned down by miscreants earlier this year.

The direction came in a suo motu plea dealing with the burning of temporary shanties that had housed migrant workers in the city.

The Division Bench of Chief Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka and Justice M Nagaprasanna stated,

"Now the State must come forward and make a statement about the compensation which will be paid to the affected families and especially 170 families who have come back and repaired demolished huts and started staying there."

Karnataka High Court

During the hearing, Government Pleader Vikram Huilgol had informed the Court that 170 families had come back from their hometowns and that they were currently residing in their huts after repairing them.

He further clarified that about 40-50 shanties were burnt down and a few other huts were physically mowed down.

Taking note of this, the Court opined that,

"State can't be a silent spectator. It's a property of the state. Some unknown persons.... they bring JCB and they razed so many structures. Some compensation, state must pay."

Huilgol clarified that the first step was to locate these migrants, and that substantial steps were being taken towards this.

He assured the Court that after the identification process is done, the issue of compensation would be taken up by the government.

Further, the Bench was informed that criminal law had also been set in motion against the persons suspected to behind the burning down of huts.

The Court also clarified that the state can always offer to pay reasonable amount as compensation to these families without affecting its right to initiate proceedings for eviction in accordance with law.

The matter will be heard on July 23.

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