In order to save its building from getting attached as it failed to pay compensation to villagers whose land was acquired for Sector 81, the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) on Saturday deposited `7 crore in a local court as part payment to pay off its liability.
The GMADA sought time from the court as it cited shortage of manpower to cross-check records, which is delaying the payment of the compensation awarded to the landowners six years back. Considering their plea, the court adjourned to November 16 the hearing of the plea filed by landowners seeking directions to GMADA to release the compensation amount to the tune of `300 crore.
About 105 landowners of Chilla, Mauli Baidwan and Kumbra villages had moved the court seeking directions to GMADA to release the compensation announced in 2007 when 276.25 acres of land was acquired to carve out Sector 81.
Complying with the court orders of releasing the compensation, GMADA on October 5 had deposited `50 crore in order to avoid attachment of its building.
"GMADA is making mockery of the process and is just making part payments as if they are paying the landowners alms and not their due. They earlier deposited `50 crore and now deposited `7 crore just to buy time," said advocate Sushil Attri, counsel of the petitioners.
He added that, "GMADA is making payment in cases where the amount of compensation is too small. The landowners have been waiting to get their dues for the past six years. The court has now granted them last opportunity to pay off their liability."
The court has already issued directives to attach the property of GMADA if it fails to pay the compensation amount to the farmers.
According to the petitioners, the compensation was fixed at `40 lakh per acre and they approached the court for its enhancement. Later, the court revised the compensation to `53.39 lakh per acre.