Encroachment in Jammu

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HC seeks report on Nallah Khad 

Jammu: A Division Bench of State High Court Friday appointed former Revenue Secretary Sain Dass Sharma and Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed as Court Commissioners to submit a report with regard to the encroachment of a Nallah Khad situated at Santokh Vihar, Kalu Chak, 

A Division Bench comprising of Chief Justice N.Paul Vasanthakumar and Justice Dhiraj Singh Thakur directed both the Commissioners to submit their report within a period of three weeks from Friday.

The Division Bench further directed that the Court Commissioners can seek the assistance of the Revenue Agencies upon a request being made to the Deputy Commissioner, Jammu in this regard.

These directions were passed by the Division Bench in a contempt petition filed by Balbir Singh, a resident of Santokh Vihar, Kalu Chak, Jammu wherein the petitioner alleged that in violation of the directions of the Division Bench dated 10 July 2014 passed in WPPIL No. 19/2014 titled Balbir Singh Vs State of J&K wherein the Division Bench headed by then Chief Justice M.M. Kumar had stayed the construction in the areas of water body or abetting the water body and had also put a ban on the sale of land recorded in the Revenue Records as ‘Khad’.

The Division Bench after hearing Senior Advocate K.S. Johal with Advocate Shahla Rafiqi appearing for the petitioner whereas AAG L.K. Moza, DAG Parimoksh Seth for the State of J&K and Advocate Aseem Sawhney appearing for private respondents observed that it is urged that the Irrigation and Flood Control Department in gross violation of the aforementioned order started laying down crates on the embankment of the Nallah/ Khad and thereafter started raising construction over it. Senior Advocate K.S. Johal further submitted that this was done through the agency of the official respondents particularly the Police Authorities for the benefit of the private respondents namely Vijay Kumar Duggal and Varinder Kumar Duggal.

On the other hand, AAG LK Moza and DAG Parimoksh Seth appearing for the Irrigation and Flood Control Department alleged that the petitioner has not come to the Court with clean hands and he himself has constructed a house over the Nallah coming from Greater Kailash side and therefore no action ought to be taken based upon his allegations in the contempt petition.

The Division Bench after hearing both the sides observed that with a view to ascertain the actual position on spot, it becomes necessary to appoint Court Commissioners to see as to whether there has been any encroachment on the land, which otherwise was prohibited to be constructed upon in reference to the general directions passed in the aforementioned PIL.

The Division Bench on the suggestion of the Counsel for the parties appointed Mr. Sain Dass Sharma retired Revenue Secretary and Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed as Court Commissioners for submitting a report after visiting the spot which is described in the petition i.e. Nallah/Khad at Khasra No. 109 at Santokh Vihar, kalu Chak, Jammu.

The Division Bench further directed that the Court Commissioners will submit a report with regard to the nature of activity being undertaken over the Nallah/Khad and the extent of encroachment over the same by either the petitioner or the respondents. The Division Bench fixed Rs. 20,000/- as fee of the Commissioners to be shared by both the parties equally.

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