Early Times Report
JAMMU, Sept 17: In a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by Advocate Ravi Abrol seeking directions to respondents to upgrade the Jammu Airport, a Division Bench of State High Court comprising Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice Sindhu Sharma today observed that during the course of hearing, it transpired that part of land (17 kanals) required for expansion had been acquired by the State iwhich was owned by the occupants thereof. Ten kanals of land was already owned by the state but the houses had been constructed thereon and people were living.
DB further observed that it is not in dispute that the acquisition of the aforesaid land has been upheld by this Court in OWP No. 726/2007 titled as Residents of Areas around Civil Airport, Satwari, Jammu and another versus Union of India and others, decided on 30.04.2010 and the people, who had constructed their houses on the aforesaid land, are still in possession thereon.
The state came out with an offer to rehabilitate them though they may not have a legal right to enforce the same in Court. The area has now been earmarked and rehabilitation site is in village Sunjwan, Tehsil Bahu, District Jammu.
It is further observed that twenty nine families had constructed their houses on 10 kanals of state land, whereas 32 families had constructed houses on 17 Kanals of private land.
As submitted by D. C. Raina, Advocate General, on instructions from Sanjeev Verma, Divisional Commissioner, Jammu and Sushma Chauhan, Deputy Commissioner, Jammu, out of 29 families living on 10 kanals of land, 25 families had already taken possession of the plots allotted to them. They have even removed the doors, windows and other fittings from the houses constructed by them. The possession thereof is likely to be handed over to the authorities within a period of one week. Four families had not come forward to take possession of plots.
Out of 32 families, who had constructed their houses on 17 Kanals of the private land, 11 families have accepted the allotment at rehabilitation site and taken the possession of the plots allotted to them. Twenty five families have not yet accepted.
It was further submitted that the plots were allotted to 36 families in the draw of plots held on 04.09.2019 in their presence and the same was videographed. However, the draw of plots for the rest of 25 families was not held, as they had not participated in the process.
DB further observed that the representatives of 25 families, who had not yet taken the possession of the plots at rehabilitation site, are present in Court. They have agreed in principle that they will take the possession of the plots being offered to them at the rehabilitation site, for which draw of plots should be held in their presence, to this, Ms. Sushma Chauhan, Deputy Commissioner, Jammu does not have any objection.
DB directed that the representatives of 25 families, who have not yet accepted the allotment, may visit the office of Sub-Divisional Magistrate, South Jammu at 4:00 p.m. today, to participate in the process of draw of plots, which shall be videographed. The possession of the plots allotted to them shall be handed over tomorrow, i.e., 18.09.2019 at 9:00 a.m. at the site. All the allottees of 25 plots to be present at the rehabilitation site to take possession of the plots allotted to them in the draw of plots.
DB further observed that the occupants of the land, which has already been acquired, raised the issue regarding the provision for electricity, water supply and leveling of some of the areas where plots have been allotted. Sushma Chauhan, Deputy Commissioner, Jammu, who is present in Court, submitted that after getting due approval from the Finance Department, the water and electricity supplies shall be provided at the rehabilitation site and the areas wherever any leveling is required at the rehabilitation site, the same will be done by the District Administration. JNF