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Delhi HC notice on plea on Akademi awards

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  24 Dec 2015 12:00 AM GMT

New Delhi, Dec 23: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday issued notice to the central government and Sahitya Akademi on a plea against the return of Sahitya Akademi awards by writers. A division bench of Chief Justice G. Rohini and Jayant th sought responses from the ministry of tourism and culture and the Sahitya Akademi by February 15. The public interest litigation was filed by senior lawyer Haji Mohammad Majid Qureshi, seeking directions to the government to frame guidelines on return of awards.

The petitioner urged the government to ensure that in case awardees returned their awards for political reasons, they should return not only the prize money with interest but also royalties they may have earned through the sale of their prize-winning books or other works. The present system whereby writers are allowed to retain the royalties earned by them through the sale of their books despite returning the award was “arbitrary and illogical”, he said. The central government’s counsel told the court that the government had been requesting the awardees to take their awards back. “We are very sad they are returning the awards. We are requesting them to come and take their awards back. We will not encash the cheques. We respect these people,” said the counsel. (ians)

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