HC castigates authorities on illegal constructions

Excelsior Correspondent
SRINAGAR, June 5: The High Court today castigated the authorities on illegal constructions especially in Dal lake area.
Hearing a PIL wherein it is submitted that the authorities including I&FC, LAWDA, SMC and even the Cantonment Board have shut their eyes and facilitated 107 perons to either encroach upon the State land or to construct the structures there upon without any kind of building permission, land ownership and no objection certificate.
The Division Bench of Acting Chief Justice Alok Aradhe and Justice M K Hanjura issued notice to Commissioner / Secretary to Govt of Tourism Department, Commissioner Secretary to Govt of Housing Urban Department, Commissioner Secretary to Govt Irrigation and Flood Control Department Divisional Commissioner – Srinagar Kashmir, Vice Chairman   Lakes   and   Water Ways Development   Authority, Chief Engineer Irrigation and Flood Control Department Kashmir, Director Tourism- Kashmir,Vice Chairman, Srinagar Development Authority Srinagar, Deputy Commissioner -Srinagar Kashmir, Commissioner Srinagar Municipal Corporation, Chief Enforcement Officer Srinagar Municipal Corporation and State Pollution Control for replying the contents made in the PIL.
In view of the aforesaid submissions, DB meantime directed that till next date of hearing, the constructions referred to in the writ petition shall not be registered by the respondents.
Counsel also submitted that Additional Secretary to Government, Tourism Department has written a communication to the Director Tourism, Kashmir dated 04.08.2017 to categorize 107 cases of the illegal construction and for registration and to permit them to fulfil the deficiency/documents and to ensure that the process of registration is completed by the end of August.
“It is also a matter of surprise that almost all such constructions are located in the areas around river Jhelum and in the areas within the jurisdiction of LAWDA declared as construction zones. This clearly indicated that the authorities under Municipal Corporation and LAWDA are hand in glove with the violators and encroachers and facilitated such constructions. After completion of illegal constructions the applicants are now seeking registration of such illegal structures as hotels and guest houses”, read the PIL.
Petitioner sought that authorities be commanded not to grant registration in relaxation of any norm prescribed under any rule or order under J&K Tourism Trade Act-2011 particularly under Government order No. 254 TSM of 2016 dated: 24-03-2016.
He further sought that authorities be directed  to remove all encroachments by demolition of structures either on the State land or having been constructed without the permission of either Srinagar Municipal Corporation or LAWDA or Cantonment Board as the case may be, more particularly to demolish these structures.


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