Friday, June 9, 2023

Supreme Court stays Uttarakhand High Court order on Haldwani eviction


New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday stayed a Uttarakhand High Court order for the eviction of around 50,000 people who have illegally encroached upon the railway land in Haldwani.

“There cannot be uprooting of 50,000 people overnight… It’s a human issue, some workable solution needs to be found,” the Supreme Court said, as it stopped a Uttarakhand High Court order that had cleared the eviction of the people who live in some 4,000 homes after a case that went on for years.

“In the meantime, there shall be stay on the directions passed in the impugned order,” the Bench ordered. “There should also be a restraint on any more construction/development on the land,” it further ordered.

The Bench said, “There can’t be uprooting of 50,000 people overnight. There has to be segregation of people who have no right on the land and the need to rehabilitate while considering the interests of the railways.

Issuing notice to the railways and Uttarakhand on the petitions challenging the high court’s eviction order, the Bench posted the matter for February 7. During the hearing, the top court noted that full rehabilitation of the people in the area was needed. 

The Bench, however, clarified that it had only stayed the eviction order passed by the high court and not the proceedings initiated under the Public Property Act.

It said people who do not have a right over the land would have to be removed along with a rehabilitation scheme. Thousands of families are facing eviction from the railway land in Haldwani’s Banbhoolpura area after the Uttarakhand High Court ordered the removal of encroachments. 

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