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Delhi High Court on Thursday stayed the notice issued by the Centre government directing eminent Kathak artist Pandit Birju Maharaj to vacate the government allotted accommodation in the National Capital Delhi.

Padma Vibhushan awardee Birju Maharaj was directed to vacate the accommodation by December 31, 2020 as his allotment stood cancelled by the date.

Centre government had also issued similar notices to few other eminent artists which had been stayed by the High Court and their hearing is still pending.

The vacation bench of Justice Vibhu Bakhru ruled, “the impugned notice dated 09.10.2020 is stayed till the next date of hearing.”

Birju Maharaj is the recipient of the second highest civilian award, Padma Vibhushan. He was allotted a government accommodation for his commendable work and accomplishments in the sphere of arts.

Earlier this month, the High Court had stayed similar eviction notices issued to Padmashri Awardees Bharati Shivaji and V Jayarama Rao.

The eviction notices issued by Centre government cautioned that if the respondents fail to vacate the accommodation by December 31, required action will be taken against the illegal residents under Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorized Occupants) Act, 1971.

The respondents argued that these notices violated their legitimate expectation to continue in the allotted accommodation. It was also claimed that no hearing or reasoning is afforded to them which ultimately violates the principles of natural justice.

Both the petitions have been posted for hearing on January 22.


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