UP dept blames cops for river encroachment
The UP irrigation department has said more than 100 FIRs had been lodged against land mafia, involved in the illegal sale of plots and mining activities, in the floodplains of Yamuna and Hindon, an ecologically-sensitive belt, but the police failed to act.
Taking the police to task, DM Hridesh Kumar has ordered all such offenders be booked under the National Security Act (NSA). The floodplains belong to the irrigation department and no map for any project in the area has ever been approved. “We will reclaim the entire encroached land,” he said.
The DM on Wednesday convened a meeting with top officials following complaints of illegal activities in the floodplains. Officials apprised him of the fact that apart from sale of plots and mining activities, many stone crushing units were operating in the area, polluting the rivers.
The Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) has found the water “extremely polluted” because of the waste generated by crushing units. The land mafia is said to have taken over hundreds of acres of land in the floodplains. Hundreds of plots have been sold to unsuspecting buyers in the area, which is located near Noida Extension — another area where buyers are caught in a real estate crisis.
The DM has told the irrigation department to identify land on which illegal colonies were being set up and start a drive to raze all structures erected in the floodplains from February 14. “Adequate police forces would be deployed for the drive,” the DM said. “Officials found hand-in-glove with the land mafia will not be spared,” he added.
Areas from where complaints of land grabbing and illegal sale of plots have been received are: Chhijarsi, Chotpur, Behlolpur, Garhi Chaukhandi, Parthala Khanjarpur, Sorkha Zahidabad, Kakrala, Haldoni and Jalpura.
The DM has also directed the registrar office to stop registration of properties in these areas.
The authorities in Noida and Greater Noida, district administration and police would launch the demolition drive against colonies and farmhouses coming up in the floodplains.