HC asks police to vacate land under its occupation in Anantnag since 2003

 J&K High Court, Srinagar
J&K High Court, SrinagarMubashir Khan/GK File

Srinagar: The High Court of J&K and Ladakh has asked police to vacate a piece of land under its occupation since 2003 in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district and pay compensation to the owner.

In his plea before the Court, Abdul Ahad Shergojry had contended that the land measuring 6 ½ marlas at Achabal Anantnag had been under occupation of the police since 16 February 2003 and he was not paid even the rental and any compensation of the land.

On 31 August 2017, the court had directed the authorities to pay rent of the land as fixed from the year 2003 till date by the District Rent Assessment Committee and compensation as approved by the competent authority upon private negotiations at the rate of Rs.15 lakhs per kanal.

“Despite the order and several opportunities granted in the past, the rental and the compensation has not been paid,” a division bench of Chief Justice Pankaj Mithal and Justice Moksha Khajuria Kazmi said.

“The respondents (police) cannot occupy any land of a private person without acquisition and payment of compensation as otherwise it results in the violation of the basic human rights as guaranteed under Article 300-A of the Constitution of India,” the court underlined.

In view of the facts and circumstances, the court directed the police authorities to immediately vacate the property and handover its vacant possession to the petitioner.

At the same time, the court directed police to make payment of the rent from 16 February 2003 till date as per the rates fixed, within a period of six weeks. “It is also provided that the respondents may either initiate proceedings for the acquisition of the above land or to pay the compensation as has been fixed by the competent authority on negotiation at the rate of Rs. 15 lakhs per kanal,” the court said.

The Court asked the Deputy Commissioner, Anantnag to file his personal affidavit by the next date of hearing, clearly indicating if the land was vacated and handed over to the petitioner and about the payment of rent for the entire period.

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