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Lakshadweep administration wants High Court jurisdiction shifted from Kerala to Karnataka?

Media reports said that the proposal was initiated after the administration was hit by a wave of litigations moved before the Kerala High Court against the decisions taken by administrator Praful Khoda Patel.

Lakshadweep administration wants High Court jurisdiction shifted from Kerala to Karnataka-VPN
Author
Kavaratti, First Published Jun 20, 2021, 8:55 PM IST
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The Lakshadweep administration has once again stirred the hornet's nest with reports emerging that it is planning to seek legal jurisdiction over the islands from the Kerala High Court to the Karnataka High Court.

According to the news agency Press Trust of India, the proposal was initiated after the administration was hit by a wave of litigations moved before the Kerala High Court against the decisions taken by administrator Praful Khoda Patel.

They are reportedly as many as 23 applications filed against administrator Praful Khoda Patel's proposals.

However, the proposal could face stiff resistance, especially in Parliament.

The Constitution of India's Article 241 gives Parliament the authority to create a high court for a Union Territory or declare any court in any such territory to be a high court for the purposes of the Constitution.

Praful Khoda Patel has drawn the ire of the local population and political leaders over his proposals which included a ban on cow slaughter, a preventive detention law and a draft regulation proposing sweeping changes in land development regulations.

He has also faced flak for revising the Standard Operating Procedure for visiting the Islands during the Covid-19 pandemic, changing the criteria for eligibility to stand for Panchayat Elections and demolishing hutments of fishermen.

Opposition parties have alleged that Praful Khoda Patel's decisions have harassed local people and destroyed the heritage of the island territory. The BJP, meanwhile, said that the Administrator's sole intention was to develop the island as a major tourist hub.

Meanwhile, legal experts have questioned the rationale behind the latest proposal to shift jurisdiction.

Some experts said that Lakshadweep and Kerala shared a linguistic bond and that it was ludicrous to shift the jurisdiction to Karnataka, which is over 1,000 km away, instead of continuing with the high court in Kerala, which is just 400 km away.

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