A writ petition was moved by Advocate Murthy Dayanand Naik on behalf of Karnataka State Level Advocates Clerks Association, in the Karnataka High Court. They prayed to direct the State Government to sponsor a Rs 5 crores fund for their welfare in the wake of COVID-19 lockdown.
Brief Facts of the Case
The plea draws the Court’s attention to the fact that the livelihoods of most of the clerks depend upon the everyday court work. Hence, the nationwide lockdown has left these clerks devoid of any income.
The petitioners complained that neither the State Government nor the Karnataka State Bar Council bothered to enquire about the association. The filing is under Article 226 (writ petition).
To avail an effective remedy, these are the reasons:
a) The petitioners mention an order dated 16.04.2008. They say that the order directs the State Government to constitute a fund. The name of it is Karnataka Registered Clerks Welfare Fund. But no such action has been taken yet.
b) Both the members and their family members are facing a lot of issues due to the lack of a judicial member. That their families remain hungry due to such a passive attitude. Thus, it is a violation of their fundamental rights under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution.
c) There is a violation of Article 47 of the Indian Constitution because of the constant neglect of the situation by the State Government. This makes the State duty-bound:
“to raise the level of nutrition and standard of living and to improve public health”.
d) Similarly, Articles 38 and 46 of the Indian Constitution come into the picture as well. The State has failed to secure the livelihood of all its citizens.
e) The State Government, by introducing several welfare schemes has tried to curb the hardship in the wake of COVID-19. We can understand that this is also an infringement of Article 14 of the Indian Constitution, as no welfare schemes are present.
In the wake of no reforms on the part of:
- the State Government, the first respondent and
- the Karnataka State Bar Council, the second Respondent;
- the petitioner, Karnataka State Level Advocates Clerks Association
The payment of Rs 20,000 should be expended per month by the second respondent, for each registered member of the Association. The petitioner expects a direction to the State Government to release a sum of Rs 10,000 per member of the association. They want the State Government “to create a corpus of Rs.5,00,00,000/- to ensure the subsistence of the members of the Petitioner-Association”. Lastly, the State Government should formulate welfare schemes for the members of the Association.
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