Nagaland, August 11: Public interest litigation (PIL) has been filed at Gauhati High Court Kohima bench through Nagaland State Legal Services Authority (NSLSA) panel lawyer over non-construction of jail in Longleng district.

The PIL, filed by Odi Jamir and Temsuyapang, has prayed for “issuance of appropriate order or direction directing the respondents to complete the construction of the District Jail at Longleng, for which the work orders were issued in 2006 and also to constitute an inquiry committee under the supervision of this court for inquiry/investigation into the utilisation or mis-utilisation of funds sanctioned for construction of the jail.

The PIL stated that since February 2, 2006, numerous work orders were awarded to two private parties by the state government for the construction of Longleng District Jail. Despite enormous amounts of public money running into Crores of rupees being withdrawn for such constructions, it said that till date the said jail construction has not been completed resulting in violation of prisoners’ rights, denial of speedy trial and various inconveniences to the justice delivery system.

The NSLSA informed that the representation was made to the parties, but the same only yielded empty assurances.

Mentioned may be made that Longleng District is the only district in the state that does not have a Jail till date for which Under Trail Prisoners (UTPs) and convicts are lodged in at Mokokchung District Jail which takes two to three hours to traverse between the district headquarters,” it said.

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Ever since the first work order was sanctioned from February 2, 2006, to date, it said that more than 20 orders have been sanctioned to the parties.

A division bench of the Court of Justice Songkhupchung Serto and Justice S. Hukato Swu first heard the matter on August 4 and listed the matter again after five weeks. During the period, the respondents including State Nagaland government authorities have been asked to take cognizance of the notice.

As for the private parties who were made respondents to the case, the petitioners in this regard were allowed to serve the notice through newspaper publication. “They shall do so by publishing the notice in two local dailies for two consecutive days making the same returnable on or before 08.09.2021.,” the court order stated.