Acrimony in Lko’s Akbarnagar: ‘We constructed our house brick by brick. Where do we go now?’ - Hindustan Times
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Acrimony in Lko’s Akbarnagar: ‘We constructed our house brick by brick. Where do we go now?’

By, Lucknow
Dec 21, 2023 09:42 PM IST

Residents of Akbarnagar in Lucknow are being asked to vacate their homes as the land is now classified as a riverbed. The residents, who have been paying taxes and have power connections, are being told that their homes are illegal. They are calling for the authorities to provide alternative housing for them. Over 950 properties are paying house tax and 1,157 have power connections in the area. The Lucknow Municipal Corporation and the local electricity company have stated that paying taxes and having power connections does not establish ownership of the land.

Mohammed Akeel, a resident of Akbarnagar said, “We have been living here since 1968. However, most other people moved into this area in 1972. Since then, we have been paying house tax, water tax, and have power connections, but now we are being asked to vacate this land and are told that it is a riverbed. Till now, we knew that it is nullah and we can live here.”

People of Akbarnagar carrying household belongings after the Lucknow Development Authority bulldozers reached the area to raze illegal structures on Thursday. (Deepak Gupta/HT)
People of Akbarnagar carrying household belongings after the Lucknow Development Authority bulldozers reached the area to raze illegal structures on Thursday. (Deepak Gupta/HT)

Sama Parveen, another resident, who was crying when asked to leave her house, said, “I have been living here for the last 20 years. Where will I go? The authorities are asking me to show the registry of the land but no one here has those papers. My son and daughter were born here, we constructed our house brick by brick and now we are told that this is illegal.”

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Anjum, another resident of Akbarnagar said, “We are poor and have no money to pay for a house. If we are given a house, then we are ready to move from here. We cannot fight the authorities. We want to live peacefully.”

Vikas Kumar, a resident of the area, said, “Were the authorities sleeping when the settlement was coming up? All these houses were not constructed in a day in the riverbed of Kukrail. Who were the people who allowed such a huge settlement to come up in an organised way? We are now being asked to move out of our houses without thinking that we have invested lakhs into the construction of these houses. We have invested our life’s savings here. Now, how can we arrange money to purchase an LDA flat.”

However, Mukesh Kumar Singh, corporator of Indira Nagar said, “The colony of Akbarnagar blossomed in the last 15 years. Earlier, there were temporary hutments. During that time, the administration never stopped them from settling here. Now, they are asked to move out of houses in such a cold wave, this is inhuman. What was the LMC, LDA, irrigation department doing when the people were settling here? They also must be held accountable for the settlement. First, every resident should be given houses free of cost then the demolition activity should take place.”

More than 950 properties are paying house tax and 1,157 have power connections.

Ambi Bisht, chief tax fixation officer of Lucknow Municipal Corporation, said, “House tax does not establish ownership of land of the tax payee. The LMC has the right to take house tax against the services provided by the civic body.”

An official of LESA said, “Even a street vendor is given a power connection by us. A power connection never gives ownership of land to him. The power connection is for convenience. If we deny power connection, then we would be criticised for keeping them without power. ”

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