The Jammu and Kashmir High Court has directed the government to provide assistance to the poor girls identified under Marriage Assistance Scheme (SAMS) within a short span of time.
Hearing a Public Interest Litigation titled Court on its own motion versus State and another; a division bench of High Court directed Secretary Social Welfare to provide assistance under SAMS to all beneficiaries within a short span of time.
"We hope and trust that respondent– Secretary to Government Social Welfare Department- will take personal interest in implementing all the schemes which deal with human cause," the bench of Justice Muzaffar Hussain Attar and Justice Ali Muhammad Magrey said in its order.
While the court directed the authorities to implement SAMS and HUNAR for poor girls, it asked the Chief Secretary to ensure that requisite funds are provided to Secretary Social Welfare Department.
The directions followed after the bench perused the compliance report by Secretary Social Welfare Department which attested Rs 596. 35 lakh as assistance released in favor of 1495 identified girls whose cases were recommended by the sanctioning authorities till October 26, 2016.
The report also revealed that 951 cases were received by the Social Welfare Department from various sanctioning authorities under SAMS and the department was under the process for disbursement of financial assistance to the extent of Rs 378 Lakhs.
The Secretary Social Welfare Department told the court that he is proactive to issue instructions to speed up the process for implementation of SMAS and HUNAR schemes in all districts of J&K.
He also informed the court that the Social Welfare Department through line departments has got 4972 girls who have been trained under the Scheme "HUNAR" till October 26, 2016.
Advocate General Jahangir Iqbal Ganai informed the Court that SAMS and HUNAR schemes are being implemented to provide benefit to the poor girls.
Meanwhile the court has sought Compliance report by November 28.
Since 2012 when a petition by one Muhammad Amin Beigh who was booked under PSA for exploiting innocent poor girls was dismissed, the court has been passing directions to the government to provide assistance to the poor girls.
Besides, the court has been passing directions from time to time to the government to contain the growing corruption in the state. Though the court forwarded suggestions it had received in open court on bridling the menace of corruption, the efforts came to a standstill after the state government showed reluctance to amend Prevention of Corruption Act and approached the Supreme Court and got stayed the high court directions in this behalf.