New Delhi: The Supreme Court pulled up the Union government today for spending crores on the Republic Day parade but delaying the payment of compensation to farmers for land acquired from them.
“You spend Rs. 100 crores on Republic Day parade but when it comes to payment of compensation to farmers. You file appeals,” Chief Justice HL Dattu told the Centre.
The court’s observation came during a hearing of the Defence Ministry’s appeals relating to compensation to farmers on land acquisition in cantonment areas in Punjab.
The Punjab and Haryana high court had awarded a substantial compensation to farmers and the ministry had appealed against it.
But the Supreme Court declined to interfere, saying, “farmers are deprived of reasonable compensation”. The government, the court said, spends “so much money on litigations” but “takes a different stand” when it comes to paying farmers.
The Chief Justice also criticised the Union government for not creating enough infrastructure for the functioning of tribunals. “If you are unable to provide accommodation, why create such tribunals?” the court said.
Justice Dattu said recently, a retired Supreme Court Judge who was appointed on a tribunal, was not provided accommodation.
“I am anguished that you are pushing them (Judges) to Commonwealth village. Why different treatment for them? You must create infrastructure before creating tribunals,” the court said.