The Uttarakhand High Court has directed the District Magistrate of Haridwar to decide on the representation of a widow belonging to the Scheduled Caste category, regarding an application for a grant of fresh license for a petty diesel retail outlet.
The Single-Judge Bench of Justice Manoj Kumar Tewari, after hearing the submission from the respective parties on Friday, disposed of the plea with liberty to the woman to make an application for a grant of fresh license for petty diesel retail outlet.
“If such application is made within two weeks from today, the Competent Authority – the District Magistrate, Haridwar, shall consider the same sympathetically and pass speaking order, in accordance with law, within a period of 90 days from the date of receipt of application, along with a certified copy of this order,” the order read.
The woman had challenged the April 6, 2021 order passed by the District Supply Officer, Haridwar, whereby her application for renewal of license for petty diesel retail outlet was rejected on the ground that application for renewal was made after the expiry of the license.
Parikshit Saini, Counsel for the widow, submitted that she belongs to the Scheduled Caste category and was a widow, having four daughters. She said one of her daughters was kidnapped on April 1, 2020, who could be recovered after great efforts on August 23, 2020, therefore, she could not make the application for renewal in time.
Due to the lockdown imposed in view of COVID-19 Pandemic, the petitioner could not make such application and she was entitled for benefit of the order passed by the Supreme Court, which provided for relaxation in the period of limitation, the Counsel added.
Per contra, Vinod Nautiyal, Deputy Advocate General, submitted that as per the Government Order dated April 26, 2002, application for renewal of licence for petty diesel retail outlet was to be made within 30 days from the date of expiry of licence, while the petitioner had made such application on the 162nd day from the expiry of licence.
He, however, submitted that the woman can apply for grant of fresh licence, which shall be considered in accordance with the Government Policy.
The Counsel informed the Court that the petitioner’s husband was granted licence in 1997 and after his death, she was granted licence in 2010.
The Counsel claimed that the widow was entitled for grant of fresh licence, as she could not be deprived of her livelihood for a small lapse, which was not intentional, but had occurred, owing to the reasons beyond her control.