The Madras High Court on Friday came down heavily on the AIADMK-led Tamil Nadu government over the issue of illegal hoardings on roads, endangering the lives of the people. Referring to the heart-wrenching accident of a Chennai techie after an illegal hoarding put up by a ruling AIADMK functionary crashed down on her, the high court asked the government to take a firm stand against such banners.
"How many more litres of blood the state government needs to paint the roads with?" a division bench of Justices M Sathyanarayanan and N Seshasayee asked, while directing the state government to pay Rs 5 lakh as interim compensation to the victim’s family. The court also gave the liberty to recover the money from erring officials.
Terming the incident "sheer bureaucratic apathy", the high court said that it has lost faith in the Tamil Nadu government and asked whether state Chief Minister K Palaniswami would now issue a statement against such unauthorised hoardings.
"There is zero respect for lives in this country…. We have lost faith in this government," the court said and directed the government to take appropriate action against concerned officials from the police department and the Corporation of Chennai.
The observations by the Madras High Court were made while hearing a plea by social activist 'Traffic' Ramaswamy, bringing to the court’s notice the 23-year-old Chennai Engineer’s death on Thursday. The woman, riding a two-wheeler, was crushed to death by a water tanker as she lost balance after an illegal hoarding fell on her.
"Just imagine (what) the girl could have contributed to the GDP of this nation. Couldn’t that politician have conducted the family marriage without banners?" the court asked. At least now the political parties must start a movement against such illegalities, it added.
(With inputs from agencies)