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Delhi Riots 2020: Former Delhi HC Judge Sunil Gaur Is Claims Commissioner

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The Delhi Government has approved the appointment of Justice (Retd) Sunil Gaur, former Judge of the Delhi High Court as Claims Commissioner in connection with the damage caused to public property in the riots that broke out in North East Delhi this year.

The appointment was as per law laid down by the Supreme Court in 2009 in the case of Destruction of Public Properties Vs State of Andhra Pradesh.

Justice Gaur has been appointed for a period of 6 months subject to further extension if found necessary.

Just two days before his retirement as a Judge of the Delhi High, Justice Gaur dismissed P chidambaram’s plea to grant him interim protection from arrest in the INX Media Case  

According to the Notification, the office of Claims Commissioner shall be subject to the following terms and conditions:

·             Emoluments, allowances and facilities, including a chauffer driven vehicle, secretarial assistance etc equivalent to that of a sitting judge of the High Court of Delhi.

·             Provision of Requisite office along with sufficient support staff.

·             Appropriate security considering the sensitive nature of the subject matter.

·             Any other requirement as may be determined by the Claims Commissioner himself to enable him to smoothly perform the task assigned

Chief Justice of Delhi High Court, Justice DN Patel had March recommended the name of Justice Gaur as the Claims Commissioner. 

As per the apex court guidelines, there should be assessment of damages to public and private property, damages causing injury or death to a person or persons and cost of the actions by the authorities and police to take preventive and other action. The Claims Commissioner will make a report to the High Court or Supreme Court which will determine the liability after hearing the parties.

In February, northeast Delhi witnessed riots which continued for over three days resulting in the death of at least 50 persons and leaving hundreds injured. At least 750 cases have been registered in connection with the violence.

-India Legal Bureau

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