SC pulls up states, asks them to fill up vacancies in SCPS

NEW DELHI
5 Apr 2017

The Supreme Court today pulled up the state governments for not filling up the vacancies in their state child protection society (SCPS) and directed them to do so within four weeks. A bench comprising Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta observed that despite a law enacted by Parliament, there were states which do not have fully operational SCPS for the protection and welfare of children and there were vacancies as well. "Law has been enacted by Parliament which says you (states) must have the society. Now the states are saying that Parliament may say whatever they like but we will do whatever we want to do. Is this the way the country will run?," the bench observed . "Under the statute, the society has to be constituted. Who are the members of this society nobody knows," the court said, adding, "It is a very serious matter."  It also observed that some of the states have not even given the names of the chairperson or members of the SCPS to the Centre rendering it to draw an inference that they do not have an operational society. The bench also said it might impose costs on those states which do not comply with its order. Additional Solicitor General (ASG) P S Patwalia, appearing for the Centre, told the apex court that the government had filed an affidavit giving details about the SCPS in various states as well as the vacancies there. He said that in every states, the SCPS has been constituted and since all the states were before the court, they should give the details to the Centre so that data could be compiled. Patwalia also said that various states were in the process of appointing or re-appointing the chairperson and members of this society while in states like Maharashta, the process of appointment was at the "final stage". He said Goa, Sikkim and Lakshadweep have not yet given the details to the Centre while Arunachal Pradesh has informed that all the members of the society were there. The ASG said that the states should be given four weeks time to comply with the court order and in the event of failure to comply with it, the apex court can impose costs on them. "We direct the state governments to fill up all the vacancies of chairperson and members within four weeks from today," the bench said adding that if the order is not complied with by the states, it will be compelled to call the chief secretary concerned.(PTI)