The Gujarat High Court on Tuesday refused to entertain a group of petitions filed by the salt manufactures against the order of Kandla Port Trust (KPT) to evict the leased plots. The manufacturers are facing eviction from Kandla which is said to be the biggest hub of salt manufacturing in the country.
The case concerns the non-renewal of the lease contracts of the 42 salt workers who were given the plots spread in more than 16,000 acres of land between 1963 and 1974 at Kandla by the KPT for manufacturing activities on 30 years of lease.
The KPT had passed a resolution for the extension of the lease. In the meantime,lawyer Prashant Bhushan moved a PIL before the Delhi High Court saying that 16,000 acres of land should be resumed and it should be auctioned. In 2010,the court directed to make mandatory to give lease by public auction instead of the practice in which such lease used to be given by nomination.
Following the order,estate officers of the KPT declared the salt manufacturers as unauthorised occupants and ordered for eviction. A group manufacturers approached the court for stay order. A division bench of the High Court comprising justices D H Waghela and G B Shah rejected to grant any stay.
According to Aseem Pandya,representing the salt manufacturers,this appeal on which their plea was rejected on Tuesday was an offshoot of main petition. He said the decision on his original appeal is lying with a single-judge which is likely to come by next week.