Residents whose homes located on Missing Link 2 (from Dhandra Road to Malerkotla Road) on the Southern bypass were acquired by a civic body two years ago to build a bypass are still waiting to be allotted residential plots of land at government rates.
The Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority (GLADA) had acquired the residential structures for the purpose of constructing the bypass from Ferozepur Road to Malerkotla Road.
According to information obtained by a resident, Sanjay Tewari, under the RTI Act, 70 of the 131 structures were razed though the demolition work was stopped after the Supreme Court's status quo order.
Although GLADA paid compensation to those displaced, its assurance of providing them plots at another location, and that too at government rates, has not yet been fulfilled.
A tea vendor, Rajesh Kumar, claimed: “My home was acquired because it came in the way on the proposed bypass route, but I wasn't paid full compensation. Moreover, though I was assured all those displaced would get residential plots at the same property rates nothing has so far been done in this regard for the past two years. I can't afford to buy land at some other location.”
The displaced residents, who are mostly labourers on daily wages, are still living in the hope that they will be allotted the plots of land at government rates so that they can build their dream homes.
Said Phoolmati, a maid: “After visiting the GLADA several times we finally got a compensation of `3.15 lakh last year. If the government provides us a plot of land at low rates in time we can live our life comfortably. Currently we are living in a rented accommodation. My husband and I had worked hard to build our house, which was acquired by GLADA.”
The poor residents said they were not aware they could move the courts when their land was being acquired.
A senior GLADA official, requesting anonymity, said the authority had offered residential plots of land at government rates to these residents. However the area from the Dhuri rail line to Malerkotla Road had yet to be acquired as the matter was pending in the Supreme Court, he added.
In 2011 those owning houses on the stretch from the Dhuri rail line to Malerkotla Road moved the high court regarding the matter. The case was then sent to the Supreme Court, which issued a status quo order.
Tewari said construction work on the bypass on the Dhandra Road-Dhuri Line stretch was halted about three years ago due to the case.
When contacted, GLADA additional chief administrator Kuldeep Singh Vaid said: “I can only comment on the issue after verifying the residents' claims, as I have joined my office only recently.”