150 bungalows occupied by politicians, others got vacated by Estates Deptt

HC directs eviction of illegal occupants

Excelsior Correspondent
JAMMU/SRINAGAR, Aug 8: The Estates Department has managed to get nearly 150 Government houses illegally occupied by the influential persons including former Ministers, ex-legislators and other political workers vacated during the eviction drive launched by it across the State.
Sources in the Estates Department told the Excelsior that the eviction drive continued and cases of some persons, who have obtained stay from the Courts on vacation of their Government houses, were being vigorously pursued in the court of law.
The Estates Department, which has 3183 residential units of various categories in Jammu, initiated an intensive eviction drive during the last one year and was able to get more than 100 Government houses vacated, which included 50 bungalows that had been occupied by political persons including former Ministers, ex-legislators and other political workers.
“In Jammu division, currently eviction proceedings are underway in respect of 35 unauthorized occupants, who will be evicted from their respective accommodations after following due process of law,” they said.
In respect of few houses, the Estates Department was pursuing the matter in the court of law as their occupants have approached the court against eviction orders served on them by the Estates Department.
In Kashmir division, the Estates Department has got vacated 48 Government houses during its eviction drive.
Of them, 16 were occupied by political leaders including former Ministers and ex-legislators and 32 others.
In Kashmir division also, the Department was following 16 cases in the court of law as eviction orders/notices issued by it to the occupants, have been stayed by the Courts.
Meanwhile, the High Court in Srinagar today directed the Director Estates to evict illegal occupants from Government accommodations immediately and sought details of Government accommodations allotted to Ministers, legislators and others.
The Court sought details of Government accommodations allotted to Ministers, legislators and others and those who are in illegal occupation of these accommodations.
The Court also directed the Director Estates to evict un-authorized occupants from Government accommodations. “Till such time, Director Estates has been directed to ensure eviction of un-authorized occupants from the Government accommodations and report compliance”, court directed.
The High Court was hearing a petition filed by one Mohammad Yaseen Shah, former Congress MLC, who has been evicted from Government accommodation in Jammu.  Shah has sought direction from the Court asking Government to restore the possession of the quarter to him.
Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey sought information from Director Estates Srinagar with regard to available Government accommodation in the State and the norms and regulations which are in vogue for making allotment to Minister and other Government officials.
Justice Magrey in his first direction, sought details of Government accommodations available in the shape of Government bungalows, houses and quarters and hired accommodations in the State.
Second directions which the Court passed pertained to details of the norms/regulations/ criteria in vogue for making allotment of accommodations to Ministers sitting and former, Judges sitting or former, officers of police and civil administration, sitting and former legislators, protected persons and media persons, from the Director Estates.
Court has also directed for details of accommodations allotted and in occupation of former Ministers, former legislators, sitting legislators, officers, Judges vis-a-vis their entitlement.
The Court sought list of the occupants with the details of accommodation, who are in possession of the available units as per their entitlement in tune with the regulations. It also sought list of unauthorized occupants with the details of unauthorized occupancy and steps, taken for ensuring eviction of unauthorized occupants. It sought all these details and information from Director Estates in shape of an affidavit.
The Court further directed that all such un-authorized incumbents including petitioner, whose list would be furnished by the Director Estates, shall be put on notice by the Registrar Judicial of this Court for furnishing the details of their houses in Jammu and Srinagar.
“The requisitioned information on affidavit by Director Estates, Jammu and Kashmir, petitioner and other incumbents shall be furnished within a period of three weeks”, read the order.
State counsel B A Dar (Senior AAG) has been directed to furnish list of all the writ petitions pending on the subject to the Registrar Judicial of this Court, who shall list all those petitions along with this petition on the next date. The case will be heard for further consideration on September 6.