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SC fines 7 states over non-filling of vacancies in forensic lab

ANI | Updated: Dec 01, 2018 17:14 IST

New Delhi [India], Dec 1 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Saturday imposed a fine of Rs 50,000 each on seven states for not cooperating with the Centre in filling up vacancies in forensic science laboratories (FSL).
A bench headed by Justice Madan B Lokur slammed the states including Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Odisha, Assam, and Goa for not taking adequate steps to fill up vacancies in FSL.
"With regard to the filling up vacancies in the Forensic Science Laboratories under the State Governments, we find from the Note that there is no information received from some very large States such as Rajasthan (vacancies about 50 per cent), Goa (vacancies about 60 per cent)(No appearance in Court today), Assam (vacancies about 40 per cent), Karnataka (vacancies more than 50 per cent), Maharashtra (vacancies more than 50 per cent)(No appearance in Court today), Odisha (vacancies about 33 per cent), Uttar Pradesh (vacancies about 80 per cent)," said the bench in its order.
The top court took note of the submission made by Additional Solicitor General Aman Lekhi and stated, There is no meaningful cooperation from the state governments in this regard and this was impacting the criminal justice system."
The apex court has asked the state governments to provide information to the Centre over the matter at the earliest.
"In addition, the defaulting States, which have not supplied information to the Union of India, are directed to deposit a sum of Rs.50,000 each with the Supreme Court Legal Services Committee within a period of four weeks from today. The aforesaid amount shall be utilised for juvenile justice issues," asserted the bench.
Earlier, the top court had sought explanation from the Centre and states over large vacancies in FSL and said that "non-filling of vacancies is hampering the speedy trial in criminal cases."
The court was hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) regarding the condition of under-trial prisoners in 1382 jails in the country. (ANI)