Resettle us on humanitarian grounds: Khori Gaon residents appeal to authorities
- “Even if we want to leave the place and go somewhere else, most of us do not have the financial strength to take this step as we have not had jobs since the start of the pandemic” said a resident from the village who did not wish to be named.
Residents of Khori village in Faridabad, slums in which are scheduled to be demolished on Supreme Court orders for encroaching on Aravalli land, said on Friday that the government must prepare a rehabilitation plan before evicting them.
“Even if we want to leave the place and go somewhere else, most of us do not have the financial strength to take this step as we have not had jobs since the start of the pandemic. In such a situation, the government should think of a solution,” said a resident from the village who did not wish to be named.
At a press meet in Delhi on Friday, activists and lawyers backed the demand.
Nirmal Gorana, the general secretary of Bandhua Mukti Morcha that works with the residents said, “The situation in the village is tense after the suicide (referring to a 70-year-old man who died on Wednesday, following which residents pelted stones at the police). There are many other people who are talking about taking similar steps. The Supreme Court’s order should be followed but the administration must think of a rehabilitation plan on humanitarian grounds.”
Human rights activist and the residents’ lawyer in the apex court, Colin Gonsalves, said, “If Khori village has encroached on forest land, then the same applies to the hotels and farmhouses situated next to the village. Displacement during a global pandemic is not justified with such blatant inequality.”
The Supreme Court on Thursday directed the Haryana government, for a second time, to clear all encroachments on Aravalli land in Faridabad by July 19. It refused residents’ request to not demolish homes.
A senior Faridabad district official said, “The Supreme Court’s orders will be strictly followed but we are looking into the demands of the residents and steps will be taken accordingly.”
On Thursday, chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar also told the district administration to find a rehabilitation option.