New Delhi, Oct 6 (ILNS) The Delhi High Court directed the DCP (South), Hauz Khas to render necessary assistance to the Delhi Government in carrying out a demolition drive at Defence Colony, proposed to be carried out on October 4.
The Single-Judge Bench of Justice Rekha Palli issued notice to the Delhi Government and the DCP (South), Hauz Khas and directed both to file a status report regarding the demolition of the encroachment. The matter was listed for further hearing on October 8.
The order was passed on a plea seeking direction to the Delhi Government to remove the encroachment in front of the petitioner’s property at Defence Colony.
The Delhi Government had earlier informed the Delhi High Court that it was “conscious of its duty and has already planned to demolish the illegal encroachment at the said site on October 4, 2021,” however, it sought police assistance to carry out the same.
Senior Advocate P.V. Kapur, appearing on behalf of the petitioner by an oral request, sought to implead the DCP (South), Hauz Khas and the same was allowed by the court.
According to the petitioner, during the Covid-19 pandemic, an unknown person trespassed and illegally constructed a temple on the footpath in front of his property. He further stated that people gather there and indulge in “rowdiness and gambling and suspected drinking of alcohol and consuming illegal substances.”
The petition relied on the Supreme Court verdict in ‘Union of India vs State of Gujarat [(2011) 14 SCC 62]’ and the judgment of the Delhi High Court in Bal Bhagwan vs Delhi Development Authority, where the courts held that no encroachments should be permitted in the name of ‘place of worship.
The petition further averred that in the guise of the ongoing pandemic, the encroachment may expand to adjoining spaces. The illegal structure and the gatherings behind it impede full access to his property, the petition adds.
According to the petition, despite diligent efforts by the petitioner, he has not been able to identify the person or persons responsible for the encroachment. It adds, around December 20 last year, the petitioner, his advocate and a partner upon visiting his property noticed some pictures and ‘murtis’ of gods erected by some unknown persons on a permanent structure made on the pavement around a tree next to a wall of his property, along with a large number of plants in large pots have been placed such that they create a corridor/pathway to the illegal temple from the main road.
“This encroachment and acts threaten to pose a security threat not only for the petitioners but also for the public at large,” the plea claimed./ILNS/SNG/IL/