Jammu, Jan 6: Jammu and Kashmir Estates Department has evicted as many as 107 politicians from government accommodations in Jammu since the dissolution of the Legislative Assembly of erstwhile J&K state in 2018.
Meanwhile, eviction notices have also been served to a former Deputy Chief Minister and three other former ministers and ex-legislators asking them to vacate their accommodations.
These eviction notices were served following the dissolution of the last Legislative Assembly of erstwhile J&K state on November 21, 2018 by the then Governor Satya Pal Malik.
Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed had filed an RTI application before the Deputy Director Estates, Jammu office seeking response with regard to action initiated by it (department) for eviction of the unauthorized occupants i.e., ex-legislators, ex-ministers in Jammu, following a judgement of the High Court of J&K and Ladakh delivered on February 18, 2021.
In response to his RTI application, the Deputy Director Estates informed that almost 107 political persons were evicted from Jammu’s government quarters though the orders of eviction, following the dissolution of J&K Legislative Assembly, were issued to all the former ministers or other politicians, who were occupying government accommodations, requesting them to vacate.
“…. After the dissolution of the Legislative Assembly, all the ex-ministers, political persons who were occupying government accommodations were requested to vacate the government accommodations. Most of them were vacated voluntarily and eviction proceedings were initiated in a phased manner against those who did not vacate the accommodation after the expiry of their allotment,” the Estates Department said in its reply. The RTI reply further said, “The department is in the process of evicting all such occupants.”
In its written reply to the RTI application regarding eviction notices issued to the unauthorised occupants of ministerial bungalows, A-Type kothis and government quarters by the former ministers illegally, the Deputy Director Estates Department said, “The evictions are being carried out in a phased manner. The notices or communications (have been) served to these occupants for vacating government quarters.” As per the RTI reply, the Estates Department has asked a former Deputy Chief Minister living at Gandhi Nagar, former cabinet minister at Wazarat Road, a former ministers and ex-legislator at Gandhi Nagar and a former cabinet minister and ex-legislator at Gulami Bagh in Jammu to vacate their accommodations.
Quoting Standard Operating Procedure or framework for withdrawal of various facilities provided to the constitutional dignitaries and others, one of the notices issued by the Deputy Director Estates, Jammu to the former ministers said, “You were requested to surrender the accommodations by or before December 21, 2018 within a period of one month from the date of dissolution of the Legislative Assembly which you have not done so far.”
The notice further asking them to “handover the government accommodation provided to them immediately”, warned, “...failing which, the department shall be constrained to initiate eviction proceedings under rules including charging of penal rent as prescribed under SOP notified vide government order no-99 Est of 2018 dated October 15, 2018.”