Srinagar: The J&K High Court has ordered verification of reports filed by the Deputy Commissioners in compliance to its directions on protection and preservation of khacharie (pasture land) in the state.
Hearing a Public Interest Litigation— Human Watch (Regd) International Vs State & others—a division bench of Justices Muzaffar Hussain Attar and Ali Mohammad Magrey also directed ruling government to take decision regarding finalization of proposed Master Plan for Srinagar and construction of satellite township at Rakh-i-Gund Aksha here within three weeks.
“It has been suggested at the bar that the reports (filed by DCs) would require to be verified by independent persons and it is also suggested that G A Peer, retired commissioner Secretary (IAS Officer) would be the best person who can be entrusted with the job of getting these reports verified and make recommendations for protection, preservation and preservation of Kahcharai land,” reads an order by the court.
If Peer agrees, the court ordered that he would be associated by two persons who would be the members of the committee.
“Registrar judicial to seek consent from G A Peer as also from Ghulam Qadir Wani, retired District and Sessions Judge,” the court said.
In their respective reports, the deputy commissioners have mainly stated that they are keeping strict vigil on state land and that no violation is being allowed. They have also claimed retrieval of many kanals of state land from the encroachers.
The court has time and again directed the deputy commissioners to ensure implementation of the statutory provisions regarding removal of encroachment from the pasture land as well the directions by the Supreme Court.
It has also directed all Deputy Commissioners to “faithfully” follow provisions and directions on conversion of agriculture land.
It has already passed slew of directions for implementing the Land Revenue Act, Agrarian Reforms Act, J&K Alienation of the Land Act and other applicable Acts.
The Acts, as observed by the court, empower the Revenue authorities to stop the conversion of the land for other uses such as construction of houses etc. and take action against the violators.
Meanwhile, the court’s direction about finalization of master plan as well as satellite township followed submissions by N H Shah, Deputy Advocate General, submitted that he has been told by Advocate General to make statement before the court that new government will take decision in respect two issues.
“At this time we grant three weeks time to the government to take decision and report to the court about the two issues,” the bench said.
To address the increasing demand for residential place in the city, the state government has extended the area from 416 to 757 square kilometers in the revised Master Plan Srinagar, according an affidavit filed before the court by Commissioner Secretary, Housing & Urban Development Department last years.
He also stated that the proposed Master Plan includes sufficient areas for residential, commercial, public use, transportation, preservation of eco-sensitive areas, protection of water bodies and agricultural land.
Some new residential areas included in the proposed draft Master Plan 2012-32 includes Mujgund, Saidpora, Gulab Bagh, Batpora, Zewan, Dangerpora, Gangjpora and Khushipora.
The officer has also stated that the Srinagar Development Authority (SDA) has conceived the idea of setting up of “Satellite Township” at Rakh-i-Gund Aksha here.
The number of dwelling units, he had said, has been estimated at 15000 which are to be classified and identified in different economic categories of the society—low, middle, high income and economically weaker sections of the society.