The Supreme Court on Monday sought a response from Jammu and Kashmir High Court Chief Justice Gita Mittal on an allegation that petitioners were finding it difficult to approach the court, Live Law reported.

The top court was hearing a plea by two child rights activists, who had sought clarity on reports that children were being illegally detained by security forces in the state. Their counsel, when asked by their bench why the plea was not filed in the state’s High Court, said the shutdown in the state had hampered access to it.

At this, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi refused to hear the matter further, and said he would speak to the High Court’s chief justice personally. He said it was a “very very serious” matter if people were unable to approach the High Court.

“We must know if there is denial of access to justice,” Gogoi said. “I will personally speak to the chief justice and if required, will go there.”

Gogoi also said that if the allegation was found incorrect after the report was submitted, the petitioner should be ready to face consequences.

In their petition, Enakshi Ganguly and Professor Shanta Sinha requested the top court to direct the government to file a status report and order the Juvenile Justice Committee of the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir to monitor incidents of detention.

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