Gurgaon’s Catholic community peeved over being denied access to burial ground at Sec 58
Community members said they found it hard to reason with villagers and will meet the Huda administrator this week seeking his interventiongurgaon Updated: Oct 10, 2017 22:55 IST
The Catholic Christian community in Gurgaon has alleged that the burial ground in Ghata village in Sector 58, which was allotted to them by the government in June, 2006, is not accessible as locals have allegedly turned it into a garbage dump. The community also alleged that repeated attempts to build a wall on the site have been thwarted by the villagers who refuse to let them take ownership of the site.
The community members have decided to meet the Huda administrator this week, saying they are finding it difficult to reason with villagers.
They said villagers are not letting them built a boundary wall for last two years and the district administration has been unable to help them deal with locals.
“We have not been able to take the physical possession of the land, as whenever we had gone to build the boundary the villagers came and threatened us and asked the contractor to leave the place immediately,” Shashi Dharan, treasurer, Gurgaon Catholic Cemetery, said.
There are around 20,000 Catholics spread over different parts of the city and they have been living in Gurgaon for decades. There are around 5 Catholic churches in Gurgaon but there is no designated burial ground for the community. They said since they are unable to take possession of the Ghata cemetery, they are often forced to go to Delhi for burials.
“It is very sad that we are unable to carry out construction work on the cemetery land despite being given possession by the Haryana Development Authority (Huda) last year,” said Anthony Cruz, secretary, Gurgaon Catholic Cemetery.
Villagers have allegedly dumped construction waste on the cemetery land. Random dumping of waste has not only turned the burial site into a garbage dump, but has also hurt religious sentiments of community members. It is also a source of major pollution, as the pile of garbage and construction waste has risen to almost 10 feet.
“There is no place for us even after our death to rest in peace. Even after HUDA allotted land for the cemetery, we are not being given access to the burial site,” said Father Joseph Henry, chairman, Gurgaon Catholic Cemetery.
Newly re-elected area councillor Mahesh Dayma said, “I will organise a meeting with the Catholic community and speak to the official concerned to resolve the issue at the earliest. If the land belongs to Huda and has been given to members of the community, they have every right to use and access it. I will also speak to the village sarpanch and ensure that the matter is resolved amicably.”
HUDA officials said that the matter has been brought to their notice and they will take steps to resolve it.