July 12, 2021 10:38:45 pm
The Lakshadweep administration on Monday opposed a plea filed by the islands MP P P Mohammed Faizal seeking recall of the proposed draft regulations among others, saying it was part of a campaign against it.
The counter affidavit filed by Ankit Agarwal, Administrative officer of Lakshadweep Administration office, said unless the draft regulations become law, no challenge was maintainable against the same.
Faizal had earlier moved the Kerala High court seeking a direction to call back the proposed regulations and not to implement them until further objections are called for the residents of the islands, after fixing a time, when the Covid-19 pandemic curbs are over and to stay all proceedings until then. He had also sought directions to place vernacular versions of the proposed draft regulations for the islands in the public domain.
“It is also submitted that Malayalam has not been adopted as the official language of Lakshadweep under Art.345 of the Constitution.The language mainly spoken by the people of Lakshadweep except in Minicoy Island is Jeseri’ which has no script and English is taught in all schools of Lakshadweep,” the counter affidavit said.
The administration said that the writ petition was not maintainable and it is liable to be rejected at the threshold itself. The administration informed the court that the draft regulations have already been forwarded to the Ministry of Home Affairs after the consultation process. It said the Home Ministry, after examination of the draft regulations as well as the comments received, will forward it to the Ministry of Law and Justice for detailed scrutiny.
“The Ministry of Home Affairs as well as the Ministry of Law and Justice will analyse the draft regulations meticulously and seek clarifications from the Administration, if required. Only if the regulations are approved after the scrutiny, the same will be placed before the Union Cabinet for consideration.”
“Only if the cabinet approves the regulations the Hon’ble President of India will be requested to promulgate the same,” it said.
The affidavit said, the draft of the Lakshadweep Panchayath Regulation, 2021 was published in the public domain inviting comments and suggestions from the general public and the time given for the submission of comments and suggestions expired on March 28 and the Administration had received 50 comments and suggestions.
“After scrutiny of such comments and suggestions the draft of the Lakshadweep Panchayath Regulation 2021 was drawn by the Administration and submitted to the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India,” the counter affidavit said.
“Unless these draft regulations become law, no challenge is maintainable against the same and consequently it is not necessary at this point of time…once the regulations are promulgated by the President under Art 240, they will be open to challenge on the well established touchstones,” the administration said.
The residents of the island are seeking repeal of the proposed Lakshadweep Development Authority Regulation (LDAR), the Lakshadweep Prevention of Anti-Social Activities Regulation (PASA or the Goonda Act), and the Lakshadweep Animal Preservation Regulation (LAPR).
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