New Delhi: Slum dwellers living on the Yamuna floodplains in the national capital have been directed by the Delhi High Court on Wednesday to vacate their jhuggis within three days or they will have to pay a fine or Rs 50,000 each to the Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) and the DDA shall proceed with the demolition.
Justice Prathiba M. Singh passed the order after Delhi Development Authority (DDA) told the court that the National Green Tribunal (NGT) had taken note of the pollution level of the Yamuna and on January 9, constituted a high-level committee.
While constituting the committee, the NGT had requested the Delhi Lt Governor, who is the Chairman of the DDA and Administrator of Delhi under Article 239 of the Constitution, to head the Committee.
On January 27, the high-level committee passed directions to take immediate steps to control pollution of the river and remove encroachments on Yamuna floodplains.
While dismissing the plea by the residents, the court permitted strict action to be taken by police.
“The Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) concerned of the area will render all support during the said action,” the court directed.
DDA’s counsel Prabhsahay Kaur submitted that the encroachment had been removed twice but the residents again come back to the same place.
“Do you know how much damage is being caused to Yamuna, you are occupying it,” the bench asked the counsel representing the residents of Moolchand basti located on the Yamuna floodplains at Bela Estate, Rajghat.
The residents have filed a plea stating that in August 2022, the Delhi Police and DDA officials threatened them to vacate their jhuggis which will otherwise be demolished.
While stating that the DUSIB in its affidavit stated that as the ‘basti’ did not figure in its notified list, the residents were not entitled to rehabilitation, the court directing the DDA to proceed with the demolition after three days.
The court also disposed of the contempt plea, saying that they cannot use contempt proceedings to threaten officials and there was no contempt.
Comments are closed.