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HC sets aside two orders passed by GHRC in 2016 Brics Summit food scam case

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A Division bench of the Bombay High Court at Goa comprising of Justice M.S. Sonak and Justice M.S.Jawalkar on 3rd November set aside two orders

passed by the Goa Human Rights Commission (GHRC) in the infamous 2016 Brics Summit food scam case. The order was passed by the High Court on a petition filed by Adv. Aires Rodrigues who is the complainant in the case before the GHRC.

The GHRC on 28th September had rejected the application filed by Adv. Aires Rodrigues to cross examine Pradosh Amoncar the owner of Bicholm based Amoncar Classic Caterers. The High Court has now directed the GHRC to hear afresh the application for cross-examination filed by Adv. Aires Rodrigues.

A bench GHRC comprising of Justice U.V.Bakre and retired District Judge Desmond D’Costa on 21st July 2020 had directed caterer Pradosh Amoncar to file his affidavit in evidence but that order was recalled on 31st August by a bench of the GHRC compriing of retired District Judge Desmond D’Costa and retired District Judge Pramod Sawant. While setting aside this order too, the High Court has directed that the application filed for recall by the caterer be now re-heard by a bench comparing of Justice U.K.Bakre and Desmond D’Costa which had passed 21st July order as required in terms of Regulation 20 of the Goa Human Rights Commission (Procedure) Regulations, 2011

A Division Bench of the Bombay High Court at Goa comprising of Justice Mahesh Sonak and Justice Nutan Sardessai on 18th February had directed the GHRC to rehear the food scam case by giving a hearing to the caterer Pradosh Amoncar who had moved the High Court stating that he was not heard by the GHRC. The Court also directed the GHRC to readjudate the whole case after hearing Adv. Rodrigues too.

The GHRC on 30th April last year in its final order on the complaint filed by Adv. Aires Rodrigues while directing the Director General of Police to impose appropriate penalty on Amoncar Classic Caterers, had pointed out that Article 21 of the Constitution of India provides that every individual has a right to life which
includes right to live with decency and human dignity and that on account of unhygienic food supplied to the police personnel during the 2016 BRICS summit
there was a clear infringement of Article 21 thus violating the basic human rights of the police personnel to live with decency and human dignity.

Adv. Aires Rodrigues in his complaint to the GHRC on 14th October 2016 submitted that the contract for a whopping Rs 51, 60,000 was given to Amoncar Classic Caterers without a proper tender for supply of food to police personnel posted on duty for the BRICS summit and that the contract was sub-let to a road side contractor who clandestinely prepared the food in an open space at Verna.

Pointing out that road side laborers were engaged for cooking that substandard food in most unhygienic conditions with water stored in open plastic barrels and used for cooking, Adv. Aires Rodrigues in his complaint further submitted that with thick bushes around the insects and cockroaches found their way into the food served to the police personnel.

Adv. Aires Rodrigues also stated that despite the GHRC having more than once reminded the Government that police personnel are Human beings and should so be treated, the authorities had failed to make any proper arrangements including food, water and toilet facilities for the police personnel.

Adv. Aires Rodrigues further stated that while the Government had gone overboard in making all arrangements for those visiting dignitaries, it had conveniently neglected to cater to the basic fundamental and human rights of its own police personnel.

Stating that the authorities had lost sight that police personnel too have a personal life, Adv. Aires Rodrigues in his complaint pointed out that the Government could not be allowed to be a cause for ruining their health and lives. The GHRC by an interim order on 18th October 2016 directed that no payments should be released to Amoncar Classic Caterers pending inquiry into the entire episode.

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