The route of the national road does not need to be changed to save religious structures: Kerala HC | Kochi News

KOCHI: The alignment of a national road does not need to be altered to save religious institutions from land acquisition, Kerala’s high court said.
Judge PV Kunhikrishnan said in the judgment: “No specific bad faith is alleged in these petitions against the national highway authorities for adopting the current route. The fact that there is a house building erected on the proposed route in question or that there is a temple or a mosque or a tomb, which will be affected by the acquisition is not a reason for abandoning the procedure. acquisition for public purposes. Of course, the state government has asked authorities to avoid religious institutions when acquiring land in accordance with the NH Act, 1956. This is only a request to avoid institutions. religious, to the extent possible. I think the national road authorities have accepted this recommendation in its spirit and have done their best to avoid religious institutions. Except in cases of manifest illegality or bad faith, this Court is not in a position to interfere with a route finalized by the National Highway Authority. Therefore, I am not in a position to accept the claimants’ assertions in these lawsuits.
Stressing that national highways of sufficient width and straight roads are necessary, the court quoted American art critic Dave Hickey, who said that “beauty is and always will be a blue sky and an open highway.”
In addition, the court cited lines from a 1975 song by Malayali lyricist Sreekumaran Thampi titled “Mannilum vinnilum” to say that God exists everywhere and that he would forgive if religious institutions were affected by the development of highways. “For the development of the national road, if religious institutions are affected, God will forgive us. God will protect the applicants, the authorities, and also the author of this judgment. God will be with us, ”said the judgment.
A batch of petitions (WP-C # 23625/2019 and others) alleging that the NH alignment was changed to save religious structures during the acquisition of land at Umayanalloor in Kollam have been considered by the court.

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