National Herald Case: Delhi HC Divisional Bench Upholds Associated Journal (AJL) Eviction from Herald House

Delhi-High-Court

The Delhi High Court on Thursday upheld the eviction of Associated Journals Limited from National Herald House in the national Capital. The Delhi High Court Bench comprising Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice V Kameshwar Rao pronounced the Judgement, however, have not clarified the on the time in which Associated Journals Limited has to evict the Herald building.

The Bench had reserved its verdict on February 18 after hearing the counsel appearing for Associated Journals Limited (AJL) and the Centre.

Associated Journals Ltd (AJL), the publisher of National Herald newspaper, on Jan 5 approached the Divisional Bench of the Delhi High Court challenging a single judge order asking it to vacate the premises in press enclave at ITO.

The petition filed by the AJL has also sought a stay on the operation of single judge’s December 21, 2018 order. Advocate Sunil Fernandes, who appeared for AJL, said the appeal was filed on Saturday evening and it is likely to come up for hearing on January 9.

Earlier on December 21, Delhi High Court dismissed the petition filed by Associated Journals Limited challenging the eviction order of Oct 30 by land and development authority. The Delhi High Court also granted two-weeks time to vacate Herald House to AJL.

The Centre in its eviction order had mentioned a violation of lease conditions by the publisher of National Herald newspaper. Centre claimed that Herald Campus was used by AJL only for collecting rent from the sub-lessees, and not for the ‘bonafide purposes’ of running the newspaper.

The publisher had approached the high court on November 12 against the October 30 order of the Urban Development Ministry, asking it to vacate the building by November 15 stating that Herald House’s 56-year-old lease to Associated Journals Limited had ended.

The Publishers in the plea termed the Centre Government decision as ‘Politically Motivated’. It further stated that Order is intent to deceive, bais and is Politically Influenced.

Associated Journals Ltd. in its petition in Delhi HC single judge bench also accused the Government and said, Shutting Down of National Herald Premises is an attempt to suppress and destroy the legacy of Jawaharlal Nehru.

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