Evict illegal occupants

Morality, ethics and self esteem cannot be so cheaply written off by those who brazenly continue to occupy Government accommodation for years in a row which was provided to them when they were entitled to that facility. Why is it that even to enforce propriety and fair play, courts have to intervene and even court orders are dared to be disregarded? It is all the more disgusting and nauseating that even ex- Ministers should behave like either innocent looking but spoilt children or simply as hardened encroachers and occupants with no entitlement in not vacating these Government accommodations which are pure and simple public properties. They have plummeted to such levels of mulish and recalcitrant behaviour that they are destined, now to be forcibly evicted making the headlines of the papers.
The State High Court, taking strong notice of this issue, recently made it clear that there should be no compromise for allowing unauthorised occupants to retain the Government accommodation. The Court, in this connection, has directed the Inspectors General of both Kashmir and Jammu to cooperate with the evicting authorities. Court further directed that the latest status in terms of the directions passed shall be filed by the Secretary to Government, Estates Department with the approval of the Chief Secretary. The Court directive further maintained that the law abiding functionaries are otherwise required to implement the law of the land. It has been made abundantly clear and needs to be underlined that any resistance made by any unauthorised occupant, including former Ministers, former legislators, etc shall be dealt with sternly. The authorities concerned shall have to proceed to evict them.
Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey directed both the Inspectors General of Police – Kashmir and Jammu to cooperate with the Director Estates for ensuring eviction of unauthorised occupants and has directed further that the execution of eviction process shall be monitored by the Chief Secretary and there shall be no compromise with reference to allowing the unauthorised occupants to retain the Government accommodations including Ministerial Bungalows and special houses and A-type quarters at the cost of public exchequer.
Excelsior, while dealing with the subject through these columns a few months back, had highlighted the problem of such unauthorised occupying of Government accommodation by former Ministers, Legislators and other unsanctioned and illegal occupants for years together without any iota of sense of propriety and had urged the authorities to have these accommodations cleared of these unwanted and unlicensed users and recover from them full rentals at prevailing market rates from the date they should have vacated these places till their eviction and treat such liability as receivables or revenue due by the Government.
Taking the routes of pleas and excuses of different hues only result in discrediting the public image such politicians or former Ministers and Legislators carry with them. Instead of creating examples of probity and integrity, not a day’s delay in vacating such accommodations when such stay turned stale or unauthorised, would have earned them public esteem. It is shocking that it is the other way round. We feel that the Honb’le Court’s directives would be implemented strictly in letter and in spirit.