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Have LDA warriors wimped out?

WHAT HAPPENED to the LDA?s much-touted drive against illegal occupants of Nehru Enclave? Deadlines after deadlines issued by the civic agency to the flat-grabbers have come and gone but the latter continue to remain as safely ensconced as ever. After all, who can afford to take ?panga? (take on) with students? leaders, who enjoy the blessings of the ruling party? The same stands true for defaulters among who are some equally affluent people.

india Updated: Jun 12, 2006 00:03 IST

WHAT HAPPENED to the LDA’s much-touted drive against illegal occupants of Nehru Enclave? Deadlines after deadlines issued by the civic agency to the flat-grabbers have come and gone but the latter continue to remain as safely ensconced as ever.

After all, who can afford to take ‘panga’ (take on) with students’ leaders, who enjoy the blessings of the ruling party? The same stands true for defaulters among who are some equally affluent people. An indication of what lay in store for anybody who dared to cross their path was given by a former LUSU office-bearer Ram Singh Rana when he threatened an LDA official not to touch the flat illegally occupied by him in the colony.

The threat seems to have paid off. Because, ever since while the official in question has been moving around with private security guards, the LDA seems to have developed cold feet. Or what else would explain LDA’s self-induced inertia in the matter. The officials undertook the first, and what now also appears to be the last, eviction drive in the Enclave on April 15.

On May 20, the city’s development regulator had put out a public notice warning unauthorised occupants to vacate their flats by May 25 failing which they would be evicted. Likewise, the defaulters were asked to deposit the outstanding amount against them with the department’s latest by June 10 to avoid eviction proceedings.

The ultimatum seems to have fallen on deaf ears in both the instances as neither any flat-grabber has moved out nor any of the chronic defaulters made any payment so far to the LDA, according to sources. For the record, however, the official excuse: the LDA Vice Chairman has extended the deadline by another five days to June 15 now, said an official when contacted by HT Lucknow Live.

“Even otherwise, what can we do without proper support and police back up.

Most of those holed up inside these flats are hardened criminals. So, anything can happen during the drive,” said another LDA official.

The LDA VC, he said, had written at least twice to the District Magistrate and the SSP requesting them to provide adequate police force needed for the drive but like LDA’s warnings these missives too have failed to evoke any response from the authorities. So, where does the buck stops? Is anyone listening?

First Published: Jun 12, 2006 00:03 IST