SRINAGAR – Over 2000 kanals of land has been encroached in central Kashmir district of Srinagar, where authorities have identified over 200 encroachments for retrieval proceedings under planned anti-encroachment drive.
Meanwhile, sources said that during the last 85 days of unrest in Kashmir following scrapping of Article 370 and Article 35 A, a huge number of illegal constructions have come up in the valley, particularly Srinagar city and its outskirts.
People alleged that authorities have failed to curb illegal constructions and encroachment of government land in the city. “During the last 85 days, three houses have come up on nazool land in Gagar Bagh, on Kralpora-Wanabal link road. No one wants to report these illegal constructions and encroachment of nazool land as it is being done on the behest of Village head (nambar dar),” a resident of the area, who wished anonymity, alleged.
Similarly residents of Kankach in Saidakadal alleged that the waterbody in the area has been encroached over the years and many illegal constructions have come up. “Illegal constructions have come up in large numbers in the waterbody in Kankach over the years. Even a road has been constructed over the waterbody. But during the last 85 days, rampant structures have been made during the unrest in the valley,” Ajaz Saleem told UNI.
An official said that the Revenue department of Srinagar district administration has identified encroached areas of some 2000 kanals of land in aggregate transferred to different departments and relevant proceedings have been initiated as part of the action against encroachers aimed at retrieval of the land.
Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner Srinagar Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary said that a special squad is being constituted this week for random inspections and initiating criminal action against encroachers.
He said that strict action will also be taken against officials in their areas for dereliction of duties or lapses involving illegal constructions.
“So far this month on the instructions of Dr Choudhary more than 20 encroachments have been removed there from and a dozen FIRs lodged against land grabbers,” an official said.
He said the Srinagar administration is gearing for a serious and definite action involving initiation of criminal proceedings and eviction against encroachments and illegal constructions on state and common lands and in areas of waterbodies in the district.
“Clear-cut instructions in this regard have been issued to concerned departments who have been asked to take immediate action including initiation of criminal proceedings and eviction of encroachers and demolition of illegal structures,” he said.
He said over 200 encroachments in the forms of landholdings and constructions — with some in waterbodies and others on the state land — have been finalised for initiation of action against them in the first phase of this well-planned anti-encroachment drive aimed at retrieval of all state land and waterbodies in the district.
The report along with locational maps also indicates names of encroachers and those involved in land-grabbing and illegal constructions besides giving other important details.
The DC has directed for immediate and time-bound action including initiating the processes of eviction and demolition of illegal structures to free the waterbodies of encroachments.
He has instructed for close liaison in the matter among all the concerned departments including the law-enforcement department in order to ensure as-per-plan proceedings and successful retrieval of the encroached lands.
He has directed for cancellation of illegal entries in revenue records and also sought explanation from concerned agencies about the basis on which civic amenities ranging from power and water supplies to drainage and roads have been provided to colonies and structures raised on the state land and in areas of waterbodies.
Meanwhile the Srinagar administration has taken a strong note of inputs about illegal constructions being built at nighttime in the Anchar lake area. The concerned officers have been instructed to keep vigil in the area and initiate strict action with assistance from local law-enforcement officials.
It has also directed for strict adherence to the in-operation magisterial order of banning movement of tipper trucks with construction material without permission and strict action against violators.
Dr Shahid, who visited and took a firsthand assessment of identified encroachments in Gilsar and Khushalsar waterbodies on Sunday morning, has urged the general public to report to concerned authorities all cases of land-grabbing and illegal constructions on state land and waterbodies in the district and help the district administration in its renewed efforts to safeguard these public assets of great importance.