The Delhi High Court Friday asked the Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) to file an affidavit explaining the reasons for adding and then deleting a slum cluster in Mehrauli from the list of rehabilitated/ notified JJ clusters.
The high court granted time to the counsel for DUSIB and Delhi Development Authority (DDA) to file their affidavits in the matter by February 21.
It also asked the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to file a short affidavit in the matter.
“This relates to 400 houses of people. You will have to give me reasons why you deleted it. How you added it first and then deleted it from the list. I want the details along with the reasons,” Justice Manmeet Pritam Singh Arora said.
The high court was hearing a plea by Ghosiya Slum Colony in Mehrauli, which was to be demolished by the authorities.
The court said its interim order directing the authorities to maintain the status quo on 400 jhuggis of the slum colony will continue till the next date of hearing, that is, February 28.
The petition has stated that Ghosiya Slum Colony is a jhuggi cluster duly enlisted in the list of rehabilitated/notified clusters published by DUSIB on its official website, which records 400 jhuggis, as does the Delhi Slum Rehabilitation Policy of 2015.
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During the hearing, the counsel for DUSIB said that the cluster earlier was in the list, but now they have removed it.
The counsel for DDA sought time to file the affidavit along with Google images of the site.
The DDA, on February 10, started a demolition drive in the Mehrauli area amid police security. However, on February 14, Delhi Lieutenant Governor V K Saxena directed the DDA to stop the anti-encroachment drive in Mehrauli and Ladha Sarai villages till further instructions, Raj Niwas officials had said.
Locals have claimed that some two and three-storeyed buildings near Aulia Masjid at Andheria More and some shanties were demolished that morning during the drive.
The land on which the alleged encroachment was done belonged to multiple agencies including DDA, Waqf Board, and ASI, it has been claimed.
According to the demolition notice, the land on which the demolition is being carried out is a part of the Mehrauli Archaeological Park and the “existing unauthorised encroachment” is acting as a hindrance to the development of the park.