The High Court of Karnataka on Tuesday warned that it would be forced to initiate contempt of court proceedings against the Chief Secretary if the State fails to implement its order of providing land for graveyards in all villages and towns within two weeks.
A Division Bench of the court is hearing a civil contempt petition filed by one Mohammed Iqbal who has alleged that the State has failed to follow an earlier order of the HC in 2019 that had directed it to provide land for graveyards in all villages within six weeks.
In September 2022, the State had informed the HC in a compliance report that it had handed over 23,815 burial grounds to local authorities and the process of handing over 3,765 burial grounds was still pending. The government was also in the process of identifying and purchasing land for burial grounds in 516 places where there were no government land available.
On Tuesday, the State sought two more weeks to complete the process. The division bench of Justice B Veerappa and Justice K S Hemalekha, however, noted that it had provided ample time to the State to follow its orders. The Court said that if its orders are not implemented within two weeks, the Chief Secretary would have to be personally present in the court on the next date of hearing on February 7 and it would initiate contempt proceedings against the officer.