The Supreme Court on Thursday said that the “unfortunate death” of a woman government official, Shaila Bala Sharma, shot dead allegedly by a hotel owner in Kasauli during a demolition drive, was the result of “non-implementation of the law”.
The apex court, while seeking the status of investigation in the case, directed the Himachal Pradesh government to apprise it about the steps taken to ensure that no unauthorised constructions were carried out in the entire state.
A bench comprising Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta also asked the state to inform it about the implementation status of the apex court’s order regarding demolition of unauthorised constructions in 13 hotels at Kasauli.
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“The death is not a result of the court’s order. It is a result of the non-implementation of the law. The incident is very unfortunate. You have to ensure rule of law and implementation of law related to unauthorised constructions,” the bench told the counsel appearing for the state.
Meanwhile, it has been reported that demolition of 13 illegal constructions at hotels and resorts in Kasauli continued on Thursday amidst high security, an official said.
Even two days after Shaila Bala was shot dead during the Supreme Court-ordered demolition drive, police have failed to arrest the accused.
“Special teams have been constituted to arrest the accused. A cash reward of Rs 1 lakh has been announced for providing information that lead to his arrest,” Superintendent of Police Mohit Chawla told reporters.
Read More: Kasauli Town Planner murder: SC slams Himachal govt for inadequate security
He said there was possibility that accused Vijay Singh might have fled to neighbouring Punjab after committing the crime.
“We are sure to nab him soon,” he added.
After firing the shots, the accused, a Himachal Pradesh State Electricity Board Limited employee, disappeared into the forest nearby.
Police officials said Singh shot dead the assistant town planner when she insisted on executing the court’s order to demolish the illegal constructions in his Narayani Guest House.
He allegedly fired three rounds, killing her on the spot. Labourer Gulab Singh received a gunshot injury in the abdomen and he is under treatment.
(With inputs from agencies)