Ghaziabad administration’s order to stop property registration illegal: Allahabad HC
The order is significant as it would pave the way for property registration in 321 unauthorised colonies in Ghaziabad. The state registration department officials have now written to district officials about the high court’s order.Updated: Jan 09, 2019 15:51 IST
The Allahabad High Court on Tuesday declared that a December 4, 2018 order of the Ghaziabad district administration, stopping land registries in illegal colonies, was “against the law”. Quashing the order issued by the Ghaziabad district magistrate, the high court said that it “should be considered that the order never existed in the first place”.
The order is significant as it would pave the way for property registration in 321 unauthorised colonies in Ghaziabad. The state registration department officials have now written to district officials about the high court’s order.
The Ghaziabad district magistrate in December last year had banned on registries of land in 321 unauthorised colonies in the district. A list of the 321 colonies was provided to the administration by the Ghaziabad development authority (GDA) and the registry work at the tehsil officer had been held up since.
Earlier in July, 2013 the then Ghaziabad district magistrate had issued a similar order, which had directed for not registering any property within the development area of the GDA without the production of a no-objection certificate from the Authority. The issue was later challenged in the Allahabad High Court after Ghaziabad resident Sachin Yadav had filed a PIL. The then district magistrate had to withdraw his previous order with a new communication on July 31, 2013. Similar directions were rolled out by then GDA vice-chairperson in August after the July 22, 2018 Akash Nagar building collapse incident. Then, the stamps department was asked to check map clearance from the authority before registering properties. In October, 2018, principal secretary (stamps & registration), had sent a communication in which he had stated that stoppage of registration of properties cannot be disallowed on the basis of administrative orders.
The tehsil bar association had declared a strike to protest the DM’s order and also moved a petition at Allahabad High Court. Another litigant, Virendra Singh, had also moved high court challenging the order of the district magistrate. The high court, on Tuesday, admitted Singh’s petition and rolled out an order quashing the DM’s directive.
“The high court has cancelled the order (of the district magistrate) and declared that it shall be considered that it never existed in first place. The registries will now start and we have also issued a letter from our side,” Ministhy S, inspector general (IG - registration), Uttar Pradesh, said.
“Further, we have also written to the state legal department to analyse the issue (to deal with registries in unauthorised colonies) and see how changes can be made. To enforce such a decision, at least seven Acts have to be changed, besides making changes in the Code of Criminal Procedure,” she added.
The officials of the Ghaziabad stamps department said they have received the letter from the IG (registration) and forwarded it to the concerned sub registrars for further action.
During a hearing in connection with Virendra Singh’s petition, the Allahabad High Court on Tuesday allowed his writ petition and said, “the administrative order is declared non est.”
Singh had moved the high court challenging the order of the Ghaziabad district magistrate as the registry of his plot could not be executed.
“After the letter by the IG (registration) and the order by the Allahabad High Court, we have taken back our strike and will resume work from Wednesday. Our petition is pending at the high court but we will contest it fully and not withdraw it. There have been several instances in the past where similar orders to curb registries were given in contravention of law. This hampers revenue for the state and affect our income as well,” Bhrampal Singh Virbhan, the secretary of the Tehsil Bar Association, said.
In her letter issued on Monday, the IG (registration) had written that examining the ownership or title of a property does not vest with the sub registrar but with the civil court. The letter had also said that the onus to stop unauthorised constructions vests with the development authority under the provisions of the Uttar Pradesh Urban Planning & Development Act, 1973. It stated further that if any unauthorised colony gets developed, it is the responsibility of the authority to stop such construction.
The clause 241 of the Registration Manual also states, “Registering officers should bear in mind that they are in no way concerned with the validity of documents brought to them for registration and that it would be wrong for them to refuse to register on any such grounds as the following ...”
Ghaziabad district magistrate Ritu Maheshwari, on the other hand, said although she had received the letter, she has not directed to restart the process of registries as yet.
“From our side, we had initially written to the state administration. They will have to issue further directions in this regard. Tuesday’s hearing at the high court was on a petition filed by a single person while the other petition (by the Tehsil Bar Association) will come up for hearing on January 11. It is our intent to stop registries in unauthorised colonies. Knowing the legal issues, I had written to state administration to address the issue of registries in unauthorised colonies. We are awaiting their directions,” she said.
First Published: Jan 09, 2019 15:50 IST