Delhi Corporations Intensify Action Against Encroachments
After the Centre proposed the formation of a Special Task Force (STF) in Delhi to fight against encroachments and illegal construction, a DDA official recently confirmed that the Supreme Court (SC) has accepted this proposal. The STF will be chaired by the commissioners of the three municipal corporations of Delhi and officials from the police, fire, housing and civic departments. However, before the STF begins to arrest the growth of encroachments that have been choking Delhi’s public land, the crackdown on some of south Delhi localities is likely to start soon. Some others, elsewhere are already in the process. Here's an update:
Localities on the radar
In Bhatti village, 200 acres of public land has been encroached. Of this, 80 per cent account for farmhouses, rest include slums and social institutions. Demarcation of public land has already begun. Bhatti came under scrutiny after a large-scale demolition drive was undertaken in neighbouring Asola village. After an inspection by the SC-appointed monitoring committee on February 19, it was seen that land belonging to the Gram Sabha, Forest and Education departments have encroached. In February, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had registered first-information reports (FIRs) in cases that dealt with a nexus between land mafia and junior revenue officials. Demolition drive in Asola was undertaken on March 14. However, Asola residents have claimed that their properties were built on private land and were legal. To confirm their claims, Saket sub-divisional magistrate has asked them to submit the ownership proof, a copy of sale deed, Khasra, Girdawari, Khatauni, Jamabandi and site plan issued by the revenue department before April 16.
Archaeological Survey of India (ASI)-protected Mehrauli Park is not free from encroachments either. Demolition drive around the park was taken up on April 12, removing several shanties and nurseries. Several nurseries along the road from Chattarpur to Lado Sarai Chowk, temporary shanties at Lado Sarai Chowk and structures near Qutub Minar Metro Station were removed during the drive, a DDA official was quoted as saying in a PTI report. The demolition has cleared 40 acres of land.
Later on April 14, the South Delhi District Task Force carried out demolitions in Adchini. Forty-year-old shops and a room that was found to be encroaching were razed.
Not just these places, in March, the Delhi Traffic Police were able to remove encroachments from 32.5 km of road. This included various stretches such as the 11.2-km stretch between Lado Sarai and the Pul Prahaladpur underpass on the Mehrauli-Badarpur Road in south Delhi, a 2.5-km stretch between the Idgah crossing and the Kamal T-point on the New Rohtak Road in central Delhi, a 5.6-km stretch between R/A Pusa and Moti Nagar Chowk on the Patel Road in west Delhi, a three-km stretch from the Hanuman Setu to the Chandgi Ram Akhara on the Outer Ring Road in north Delhi, 3.2 km of stretch in Netaji Subhash Place in the outer district and seven km from the ITO Chungi to the Karkari Mod in east Delhi which have been made encroachment free.
Meanwhile, the three municipal corporations have gone heavy on encroachments across Delhi. Extended portions of shops, vehicles parked in no-parking areas etc have been demolished or seized. Among areas where officials have already done the needful include Manohar Nagar to the red light at district centre on Outer Ring Road, and Uttam Nagar terminal to Dwarka Mor, claim reports.
In East Delhi, encroachments in Mayur vihar Phase I have been inspected and officials have been directed to take action. Similarly, the North Delhi Municipal Corporation has removed temporary encroachments in parts of Kanjhawala to Ghevra and Karala to Mundka.
With inputs from Housing News