The Punjab and Haryana High Court has accused the UT administration of being “discourteous” and trying to obstruct the renovation of court rooms on the pretext of building’s heritage status.
The unsavoury controversy erupted following a letter from the UT chief architect who stated that he was sending drawings of court rooms on the “insistence and the directions of the chairman, building committee (of the high court) that the functionality of the court cannot be sacrificed at the cost of heritage”.
The court’s registrar general took a strong note of the “discourteous” language and sent a strong-worded letter admonishing the UT administration for this. He told the UT adviser to tell his officers not to use impolite language with the court. The administration has accordingly advised its officers, especially the chief architect, “not to use impolite language while communicating with the high court”.
Hindustan Times is in possession of the letters exchanged between the high court and the UT administration.
It all started with the chief architect writing to the registrar general in July this year. He referred to a meeting held in June where the building committee of the high court wanted the architecture department to send drawings to upgrade a court room into a model court room.
“It was conveyed to the building committee that since it is a part of the heritage building, only minimum basic intervention in comformity of the original structure can be done as committed in the dossier,” wrote the chief architect.
He added: “However, on the insistence and the directions of the chairman, building committee, that the functionality of the court cannot be sacrificed at the cost of heritage, this has been prepared with modifications which can be reversed if required…”
This didn’t go well with the high court. In his letter in August, the registrar general noted that the matter pertained to establishing of model courts in accordance with the directions passed in the chief justices’ conference earlier this year.
The building committee of the high court discussed this in its meeting in June this year and requested the UT administration to issue necessary drawings for upgrading court room number 2, which is next to the chief justice’s courtroom.
The drawing pertaining to the chamber of court room was issued separately by the chief architect, which was approved by the high court. “Now, while issuing drawings for court room number 2, the office of chief architect, Chandigarh, has used discourteous language in covering letter addressed to this court,” said the registrar general, adding, “the committee strongly deprecates the manner of language and twisted contents of the letter.”
The registrar general added the building committee of the court desired that the Chandigarh administration be issued “necessary instructions not to use impolite language with this court in future.”