550 kanal land evacuated from encroachers

JCB of JDA removing encroachment in Majeen Sidhra on Saturday.
JCB of JDA removing encroachment in Majeen Sidhra on Saturday.

Nishikant Khajuria
JAMMU, Mar 4: In the light of State High Court direction, Jammu Development Authority (JDA) today succeeded in its biggest ever land retrieval by evacuating more than 500 kanals of   land from the illegal encroachers at Majeen Sidhra in Jammu.
In the day long action, the JDA teams with the assistance of District Administration and heavy posse of local police, removed around 200 concrete plinths and more than 25 temporary tin sheds, which were erected by the illegal encroachers with the connivance of land mafia.
JDA Vice-Chairman, SSP Jammu, Additional Deputy Commissioner Jammu and others senior officers personally supervised the one of the biggest anti-encroachment operation, which lasted throughout the day. Under the protection of strong contingent of Police force, the JDA team removed the illegal structures and concrete plinths with the help of four JCVs.
In the wake of High Court direction to JDA for demarcation of its land and the action taken plan submitted to the State Vigilance Commission by the Housing and Urban Development Department for removal of encroachment and protection of the JDA land in village Majeen Sidhra, a similar anti-encroachment drive was attempted last week but the same was foiled by the illegal encroachers who had resorted to heavy stone pelting on the JDA team. The stone pelting by encroachers had not only forced the JDA team to flee from the spot but also some officials in the drive, including Director Land Management, were injured.
Recently, Deputy Chief Minister Dr Nirmal Singh, who heads the Housing and Urban Development Department and is Chairman of the Jammu Development Authority, had also discussed the issue of land encroachment at a high level meeting, which was attended by Commissioner Secretary HUDD, Chief Conservator of Forest, Jammu, MD J&K Housing Board, DC Jammu, DC Samba, DIG Jammu-Kathua Range, SSP Jammu, SSP Samba, Commissioner JMC, Vice-Chairman JDA and others.
As per the plan of action for removal of encroachment from JDA land in village Majeen Sidhra, submitted to the SVC last month, the JDA had acquired 10574 kanal and 3 Marla land in the area.   Besides this, 4257 Kanals and 18 Marla of State land was transferred and handed over to JDA. Thus a total of 14833 kanal and one Marla of land (State and acquired land) was handed over to JDA by Collector Land Acquisition for the purpose of development of project of Satellite Township there.
However, due to certain technical reasons and the encroachments, the project of Satellite Town could not be matured and the acquired land,   measuring 649 kanals and 17 Marlas, was utilized for the Government offices and private institutions, which include ASCOMS Hospital, IMPA Village Majeen, Narcotics Bureau, Security Headquarter, Auxiliary Police, and PCR.
Even as the JDA has been carrying out anti encroachment drives from time to time and   the same was stepped up recently after its last Board of Directors meeting and in the light of High Court direction for the demarcation, today’s retrieval of land, around 550 kanals, was biggest ever in a single go.
The team of officers, comprising of JDA Vice-Chairman Mubarak Singh, SSP Jammu, Sunil Gupta, ADC Jammu Arun Manhas, Director Land Management Rashpal Singh, XEn JDA and others, personally supervised the anti-encroachment drive, which was completed by the evening.  The action is all set to be extended tomorrow for fencing of the retrieved land, sources said.
Pertinent to mention that approximately 78,883 kanals of land has been transferred to JDA as per Development Act 1970 and vesting of Ownership Rights to unauthorized occupants under Roshni Act. As against this, only 17,884 kanals and 17 marla has been demarcated and handed over to the JDA while major portion of the land has not been handed over to JDA due to encroachment and other reasons thus causing huge negative impact on the development works.
The State High Court in a CMA No 846/2013, WPPIL number 19 of 2011, had directed Deputy Commissioner Jammu and JDA to carry out the demarcation of JDA land.