Kochi, Sep 23 (UNI) In a major embarrassment for the Kerala Government, the State High Court today quashed its May 31, 2008, order taking over possession of the Trivandrum Golf Club.
Justice V Giri held the order was in violation of the principles of natural justice and hence, warranted interference of the court.
The court held the showcause notice issued to the club did not contain specific allegations and the petitioners, the managment of the club, were not given adequate opportunity to defend their case.
Observing the government should act in a fair and reasonable manner, the court held the action of the government in taking over the club did not suit that mandate as the petitioners were not given proper hearing.
However, the court also observed that indisputably, the government was the owner of the property and was entitled to exercise its right over the property.
''The right available to the petitioner is very limited. The government, being the licensor, is entitled to revoke the licence.
''The Clause 11 of the licence deed also provides for revocation of licence. But the procedure adopted in issuing the order is vitiated,'' the court said.
Laying down the fair procedure, the court directed the government to first issue showcause notice to the petitioner within one month from today.
The petitioner shall file their objection within six weeks from that date. The government should complete the entire proceedings within six months.
If the decision of the government was to evict the golf club management, then it should be given reasonable time to vacate the premises as it was in possession of the area for a long time, the court added.
UNI XR ARC GM PY KP1434