SC to Hear on Thursday Plea Against Eviction of More Than 4,000 Families from their Houses in Haldwani

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Advocate Prashant Bhushan mentioned the matter for urgent hearing before a bench headed by Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and comprising Justices S.Abdul Nazeer and P.S. Narasimha. 

NEW DELHI — The Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to examine on January 5 a plea connected with proposed eviction of more than 4,000 families from railways land at Haldwani.

Advocate Prashant Bhushan mentioned the matter for urgent hearing before a bench headed by Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and comprising Justices S.Abdul Nazeer and P.S. Narasimha. The bench agreed to hear the matter on Thursday.

Bhushan said a connected matter is scheduled for hearing Thursday and asked the court to tag his plea along with it.

Bhushan’s plea said: “The petitioners are poor people who have been lawful residents of Mohalla Nai Basti and Line N 17 & 18, Banbhulpura (Azad Nagar), Haldwani District Nainital, Uttarakhand for more than 70 years. As a result of a series of injustices that have resulted in an order for demolition of their houses vide the impugned order, the petitioners are left with no remedy other than the present SLP.”

According to reports, more than 4,000 families face eviction from railways land in Banbhulpura area in Uttarkahand’s Haldwani district, after the high court ordered demolition of constructions on the railway land.

The plea contended that the Uttarakhand High Court ordered the summary eviction of more than 20,000 people residing in more than 4,000 houses even though proceedings regarding the title of the residents were pending before the district magistrate.

The plea has been filed by Bhupendra Arya and others, challenging Uttarakhand High Court order on December 20, 2022, which directed petitioners be evicted within a week and their houses be demolished.

According to reports, encroachments around Haldwani Railway Station included around 20 mosques and nine temples and schools.

“It is submitted that the high court, in complete disregard of settled principles of title and occupation, collectively rejected all documents placed by the petitions that clearly established their title,” said the plea.

The petitioners contended that the names of the local residents have been recorded in the municipal records in the house tax register and they are paying the house tax regularly.

“Further there are five government schools, one hospital, and two overhead water tanks in the area. Thus, the long physical existence of the petitioners, some even prior to Independence, has been recognized by the state government and its agencies by providing the petitioners with electricity and gas connections, enrolling the petitioners on voters list and providing them with Aadhaar cards,” said the plea. — IANS

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