We are conscious of humanity, says SC on demolitions on Aravali forest land


The bench, also comprising Justice Dinesh Maheshwari, made it clear that rehabilitation will be for those who are eligible…reports Asian Lite News.

The Supreme Court, hearing a plea in connection with demolition of unauthorised structures in Faridabad’s Khori village which came up on 150 acres of Aravali forest land, on Monday orally observed that it is conscious of humanity.

Senior advocate Colin Gonsalves, representing the residents of the village, submitted before a bench headed by Justice A.M. Khanwilkar that people whose houses have been demolished are facing hardship, as basic amenities like drinking water, food, toilets, temporary accommodation, electricity and medical facilities were not provided to them.

The bench, also comprising Justice Dinesh Maheshwari, made it clear that rehabilitation will be for those who are eligible.

Gonsalves cited a report prepared by social workers and lawyers, who had visited the demolition site and interviewed the people at temporary shelters. Submitting that there is an urgent need of drinking water, accommodation, food, toilets, health facilities and electricity, he said that authorities’ claim regarding temporary accommodation are “absolutely false” and people are waiting for rehabilitation.

Counsel representing the municipal corporation of Faridabad objected to this line of argument, claiming that people have already been provided temporary accommodation, food, and toilets.

As Gonsalves urged the top court to understand the suffering of the people, the bench replied: “We are hearing you fully.”

It noted that it is examining all aspects, which includes immediate pressing needs, but stressed that it will not provide resettlement at that very place. “Then what was the purpose of removal of these unauthorised constructions,” it asked.

Senior advocate Sanjay Parikh, representing some of the petitioners, pressed on deplorable condition at the temporary shelter provided by authorities concerned. At this, the bench observed: “We are also conscious of humanity. It is not the forte of only few.”

The municipal corporation’s counsel submitted fresh and hygienic food is being provided at the temporary accommodation and they are giving Rs 2,000 per family per month for at least six months.

The bench posted the matter for further hearing on September 13.

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