Residents force demolition squad to retreat | india | Hindustan Times
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Residents force demolition squad to retreat

ADA's demolition squad had to go on the backfoot after facing the ire of residents who confronted them with a volley of legal questions during encroachment drive on Sardar Patal Marg in Civil Lines this afternoon. After a long argument following which dozens of residents threw themselves in front of the bulldozer lying prostrate on the ground, the demolition squad had no way out but to beat a retreat.

india Updated: Apr 17, 2006 01:09 IST

ADA's demolition squad had to go on the backfoot after facing the ire of residents who confronted them with a volley of legal questions during encroachment drive on Sardar Patal Marg in Civil Lines this afternoon. After a long argument following which dozens of residents threw  themselves in front of the bulldozer lying prostrate on the ground, the demolition squad had no way out but to beat a retreat.

But before leaving they asked the protesting residents to meet the divisional commissioner and put their arguments before him.

It may be mentioned that following a PIL in the HC for free and unhindered flow of traffic, the ADA is removing encroachments from both sides of the road in the city. The housing secretary KL Meena who came to the city the other day also ordered the ADA to remove all encroachments from road widening in the city for facilitating smooth flow of traffic.

The residents argued that encroachment can be removed from government land and not from their private land. The situation particularly on the SP Marg in question is quite tricky. Nearly 99 percent of land on both sides of this road is private property. Now the question is: Whether ADA has the right to demolish whatever construction has been made on private free-hold land by the residents.

Knowledgeable sources said, the state government still has the right over the land but the same is to be first acquired by the state in public interest.
The ADA cannot do things in a whimsical manner. It will have to follow the law of the land before embarking on any such venture, say the residents who are preparing to fight tooth and nail for their rights.

Similarly, another piquant situation  exists in the case of Law Book Company which came into existence before 1958. During this time they had reportedly made a little encroachment but the same was compounded, claim the sources. If what they say is right then in this situation demolition would pose many problems.

Then the same compounding has also been done by the ADA in the case of shops beginning from Varieties Stores upto the Peshawari restaurant. Will the ADA demolish encroachment, if any, after realising compounding fee from the owners, is the question doing rounds in Civil Lines.