HC raps state over allotment of land for Maharashtra National Law University
A PIL filed two years ago complained that while 60 acres had been allocated by the state government on June 10, 2016 for a permanent campus of the university, no concrete measures were taken to hand over the plot.Updated: Feb 23, 2018 11:05 IST
The Bombay high court on Thursday rapped the state government over its lackadaisical approach in providing land for Mumbai campus of the Maharashtra National Law University (MNLU).
“You are not taking the matter seriously,” the division bench of Justice SC Dharmadhikari and Justice Bharati Dangre told the government’s lawyer on Thursday. The bench has now summoned the principal secretary of the revenue department and sought an explanation from him regarding the delay.
The court was hearing a public interest litigation filed by another advocate Pradip Havnur who complained that no concrete steps were being taken to hand over a 60-acre plot at Gorai for Mumbai campus of the MNLU. Havnur filed his PIL two years ago complaining that while 60 acres had been allocated by the state government on June 10, 2016 for a permanent campus of the university, no concrete measures were taken to hand over the plot.
Havnur said this raised serious doubts over the progress of building the university. He said he came across MNLU’s status in December 2 to December 16 when he visited the campus of the Tata Institute of Social Science (TISS) at Chembur and noticed that MNLU was operating from a temporary transit-type ground-plus-one storied structure within the TISS campus. The lawyer contended that the National Law Universities Act, 2014 was enacted to establish National Law Universities in states for the development of legal education. He said under the enactment, it was the state ’s duty to extend financial and other support to these universities. He has, therefore, sought a direction to the Maharashtra government to hand over the entire 60-acre plot at Gorai to MNLU at the earliest and make adequate financial provision to set up the campus.
During the course of hearing the bench said the law university at Bangalore was set up in 1978. Although there is no law university in Maharashtra, the state is not at all willing to extend its support for the cause.