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HC quashes sealing of Sector 10 restaurants, calls UT Estate Office actions unlawful | Chandigarh News

2 min read

The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Tuesday disposed of the petitions filed by three restaurants in Chandigarh, which were sealed by the UT Estate Office in December 2023. The properties were de-sealed on Tuesday evening following the orders of the HC.

The HC heard petitions filed by M/S Martas and Girls Food and Halcyon Inn Hospitality Services Private Limited and Tulip Hospitalities.

Senior Advocate Rupinder Khosla, counsel for Halcyon Inn Hospitality Services Private Limited and Martas and Girls Food, confirmed that the HC has set aside the sealing orders of the UT. If proceedings are initiated in the matter again, the HC will issue a fresh notice to the occupiers of the property.

On December 26, 2023, a team from the UT Estate Office sealed the premises of a coal depot in Sector 10, where the restaurants/cafés in question were located. While sealing the restaurants, UT estate officials stated that the establishments were operating without approved building plans.

Challenging the order to seal their properties, the petitioners moved to the HC in January this year.

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Senior Advocate Rupinder Khosla, with Advocate Sarvesh Malik, contended on behalf of Halcyon Inn Hospitality Services Private Limited, that it is aggrieved by the action of respondent authorities in not associating the petitioner before initiating the process of considering any action regarding any violation or misuse of the premises. The passing of the orders sealing the petitioner’s unit at Coal Depot, Sector 10, Chandigarh, under the name and style of Brooklyn Central, occurred without any opportunity for a hearing, which is illegal and contravenes the provisions of the Act of 1952.

It was further argued that the petitioner is the biggest sufferer due to the order of the UT Estate Office, as its restaurant was shut down during the peak time of New Year on December 26, 2023, causing a significant financial loss without any fault on its part.

The counsel for Tulip Hospitalities, Senior Advocate DS Patwalia with Adityajit Singh Chadha, contended that the Chandigarh Administration, without applying any mind, upheld the order of the Estate Officer, directing the sealing of the premises in question, stating that business activities performed at the coal depot site were beyond the approved zoning plan, which is arbitrary.

Hearing the matter, the division bench of Justice Arun Palli and Justice Vikram Aggarwal disposed of the petition on Tuesday. A detailed order in the matter is yet to be released on the HC website.

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