The Honourable Supreme Court of India gave a historic judgement paving the way for protection of the commons across the country on 28th January 2011. This came in connection to the hearing on the Civil Appeal No. 1132/2011 @SLP(C) No. 3109/2011. This blog is aimed to collate all possible information related to the judgement. For views and comments write to firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Despite DC order, no action against culprits
Rajeev Bhaskar, Hindustan
Rurka Kalan (Jalandhar), August 04, 2012
First Published: 13:06 IST(4/8/2012)
Last Updated: 13:10 IST(4/8/2012)
Despite a written order issued by
the deputy commissioner to get evacuated 17 malras of village pond at Mashiana
village in Rurka Kalan Block, which was encroached by a panchayat member, the
district development and panchayat officer (DDPO) concerned has failed to take
In 2007, a panchayat member, Buta
Ram, along with other villagers - Tawinder Pal, Joginder Pal and Surjit Kaur -
encroached the land of pond in alleged connivance with the sarpanch and
constructed the boundary wall around the land.
On the complaint of villagers in 2008, an inquiry
was conducted by the DDPO, which revealed that the land was encroached by Buta
Ram and his accomplices before issuing notices to all encroachers for removing
The encroachers refused to accept
the notices and instead Buta Ram applied for a no-objection certificate (NOC)
from the DDPO for contesting the panchayat election. The official concerned
issued the NOC despite the fact that notices were issued against Ram, former
sarpanch Kuldip Samra told HT. "In spite of the objection raised by me,
Buta Ram was issued NOC by the returning office and he was re-elected as member
of panchayat," Samra said, adding that he brought the issue of
encroachment to the notice of the then deputy commissioner Ajit Singh Pannu
during a sangat darshan programme of the chief minister in the area in 2008.
After probing the issue, the DC
ordered registration of a case against the offenders and the newly-formed
panchayat resolved to take action against encroachers, Samra added.
After no action was taken by the
authorities against the encroacher, a panchayat member, Kulwinder Singh, lodged
a complaint with the DC in October 2010. The DC marked an inquiry to DDPO
Sarabjit Singh Walia, who handed over the probe to block development and
panchayat officer (BDPO).
The BDPO, in his report,
mentioned that there is an encroachment on the panchayat land and named
sarpanch Kulwinder Kaur for not only sheltering the encroachers but also
facilitating them in getting electricity and water connections to the
construction on the encroached land. A copy of the BDPO's report is with HT.
The BDPO recommended that a case
under the Village Common Land Act, 1964, should be registered against the
suspects, including sarpanch.
On the basis of the report, the
DC wrote to the deputy director, department of panchayat,to take action against encroachers and marked
a copy to the DDPO. Accordingly, the deputy director issued notices to the
suspects, but to no avail, as officials concerned again failed to take action,
"Connivance of the DDPO with
the encroachers could be gauged from the fact when I recently met him on the
issue, he expressed his helplessness, citing a high court order of not removing
encroachment from panchayat land," Samra said.
Showing a copy of the order of
the apex court, which ruled that land recorded as a pond must not be allotted
to anybody for construction of a house or any other purpose, Samra said,
"How can the high court supersede the verdict of the apex court by
allowing encroachment on panchayat land?"
DDPO Sarabjit Singh Walia
expressed ignorance on the issue and said he will have to go through the files
before making a comment. "I am not aware of any encroachment or notices
issued to the encroachers and will get back to you only after verifying the
record," he said.