HC slams GDA for inaction on expired lessees

HC slams GDA for inaction on expired lessees
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Srinagar: The J&K High Court Wednesday came down heavily on officials of Gulmarg Development Authority (GDA) for failing to take action against hotels and buildings whose leases have expired.
The division bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Sanjeev Kumar granted one more opportunity to officials -before taking action against them- to take decision on hotels and buildings whose leases has expired.
The court, while reiterating its earlier directions, recorded that the issue was of serious nature as property worth crores of rupees was being squandered by the authorities.
Taking tough stand on retention and withholding of public property beyond time limit, the court had directed the government to place its stand about recovery of such properties in Gulmarg where leases or licenses have expired.
As the court was about to pass harsh orders against the GDA for their lackadaisical approach, the counsel appearing on their behalf requested the court for one more opportunity to apprise the court about the issue.
On previous hearing the court had directed authorities to place on affidavit their stand with regard to the recovery of such properties.
“We shall also be informed in the affidavit about the manner in which such public property shall be dealt with. If the same is to be allowed to private persons, the procedure which would be followed for the same should be explained to us,” the division bench had directed.
The court had passed the direction after attention had been drawn to SRO 580 wherein the maximum period for which a lease could be granted was 40 years. “Obviously, no extension beyond this period is permissible,” the court had said.