The High Court of Himachal Pradesh (HP) has directed the Chief Secretary to convene a meeting of all the stakeholders (departments) within eight weeks and take appropriate decision on the issues related to civic amenities to be provided to the commuters during the course of their travel by whatsoever mode of transport, on the state or National Highway.
A division Bench comprising acting Chief Justice Sanjay Karol and Justice Sandeep Sharma passed these orders on a petition taken up suomoto by the Court as Public Interest Litigation on the status report filed on availability of various sanitary facilities on the National or state Highways in the state.
The Court, in its earlier order had shown deep concern on the aforesaid issues and had directed the state to consider the suggestions that is construction of public or private toilets on highways keeping in view the safety and security of women, making it mandatory for all the dhabas or restaurants on the highways to make available public toilets, providing medical aid on the highways at appropriate places, in case of any emergency and directing drivers or conductors to stop their vehicles at places where the commuters can avail facility of toilet apart from taking refreshment.
The Court was of the view that just as Prime Minister of India has come out with the scheme of having toilets in every household, the state can have similar programme, as a mass movement for having toilets or convenience centres for moving population.
The court listed the matter for 7 March.