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‘You’re stalling everything’: SC raps Centre over Delhi sealing

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New Delhi: The Supreme Court pulled up the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs for “stalling everything” and not coming out with a procedure for issuance of notice to defaulters who have carried out illegal constructions in Delhi.

The top court said the ministry seeking two adjournments for bringing the agreed procedure was “too much” and the attitude of the authorities concerned was that “everybody is to be blamed except us”.

“Why is your ministry stalling everything? They are stalling everything. For an agreed procedure, two adjournments have been taken. What is this happening? This is too much,” a bench of justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta told Additional Solicitor General or ASG ANS Nadkarni, appearing for the centre.

 

When the ASG said deliberations were going on and the ministry was considering a rule book, the bench said, “We will see the rule book. Everybody here is for a boxing match”.

“Everybody is to be blamed except us, that is the attitude of everybody. It is just like going on in circle. Let us see your rule book and finalise it once and for all,” the bench said.

The top court told Nadkarni that the ministry has to help the people of Delhi in this matter.

“If in Delhi, you will fight like this then you will have to fight in all other parts of the country also. Why this confrontation?” it said.
Senior advocate Ranjit Kumar, assisting the top court as amicus curiae in the sealing matter, referred to a report filed by the court-appointed monitoring committee.

In its report, the committee has claimed that the Land and Development Office (L&DO) was deliberately attempting to stall the sealing operation of unauthorised constructions in Delhi.

The report said that official of L&DO has not attended meetings of the monitoring committee and he was not even answering the phone calls from the panel.

The ASG said that such an act was unacceptable after which the bench asked him to make a phone call to the L&DO.

The ASG later told the court that the Land and Development Officer was not well and was down with eye flu and he would file an affidavit in this regard.

During the hearing, the bench asked why the special task force (STF), constituted on April 25 following the court’s order to oversee enforcement of laws on illegal constructions in Delhi, was not filing their reports in the matter.

“What are we supposed to do? Your vice-chairman of DDA (Delhi Development Authority), L&DO do not do anything. Your ministry is not responding. I fail to understand what are we supposed to do,” Justice Lokur observed.

The ASG told the court that he would place before the court an agreed procedure for issuance of notice to defaulters who have carried out illegal constructions in Delhi.

The bench has posted the matter for hearing on October 31.

The monitoring committee on sealing, comprising KJ Rao, former advisor to the Election Commissioner; Bhure Lal, chairman of Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority; and Major General (Retd) Som Jhingan, was set up on March 24, 2006, by the top court.

The court is also seized of the issue related to validity of Delhi Laws (Special Provisions) Act, 2006 and subsequent legislations which protect unauthorised construction from being sealed.


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Centre, Assam move SC seeking extension of deadline for final NRC

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New Delhi: The Centre and the Assam government on Friday moved the Supreme Court seeking extension of the July 31 deadline for finalisation of the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

The Centre told a bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi that India could not be the refugee capital of the world.

The Union and state governments also sought sample verification of the citizens included in the NRC, saying lakhs of people had been wrongly included in areas bordering Bangladesh due to involvement of local officers.

 

The first draft of the NRC for Assam was published on the intervening night of December 31, 2017 and January 1, 2018 in accordance with the top court’s direction. Names of 1.9 crore people out of the 3.29 crore applicants were incorporated then.

Assam, which had faced influx of people from Bangladesh since the early 20th century, is the only state having an NRC which was first prepared in 1951.

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Maya targets BJP, asks it to make public its source of funds during polls

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New Delh: BSP chief Mayawati on Friday targeted the BJP asking it to make public the source of funds received by it during elections and alleged that it could not tolerate when people of deprived sections progressed in business.

The former Uttar Pradesh chief minister’s remarks came a day after the Income Tax Department attached a ‘benami’ commercial plot worth Rs 400 crore in Noida belonging to her brother and his wife.

She asked the BJP to make public the source of Rs 2,000 crore it allegedly collected during elections.

 

“Everybody knows that during elections the BJP got Rs 2,000 crore in its accounts. It is not clear who gave it the money and everyone wants to know its source. Is it benami?” she asked.

She alleged that votes of the poor and deprived were bought in the polls through these funds.

The BJP could not tolerate when people of the deprived sections progressed, especially in business, and used power and government machinery against them, she claimed.Their attempt to crush the voice of the deprived people would not succeed, Mayawati said, adding that her supporters should not think that when she was not spared, what would happen to them.

She said that before pointing a finger at others, the party should introspect.

“If they think they are Harishchander (honest) they should hold a probe about the wealth of their people before and after coming into politics,” she said.

The provisional order for the attachment of the seven-acre plot, beneficially owned by Anand Kumar and his wife Vichiter Lata, was issued on July 16 by the department’s Delhi-based Benami Prohibition Unit (BPU).

Mayawati recently appointed her brother Kumar as national vice president of the BSP.

Benami properties are those in which the real beneficiary is not the one in whose name the property has been purchased.

The plot, where a five-star hotel and other luxury facilities were planned to be created, is registered at no 2A, Sector 94, Noida, in UP’s Gautam Budh Nagar district, part of the National Capital Region.

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3 men beaten to death over suspicion of cattle theft in Bihar

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Saran: Two men were beaten to death by locals after suspecting the duo to be cattle thieves in Baniyapur in Saran district on Friday morning, police said.

Villagers claimed that three persons came to steal cows. However, when they tried to catch them, one of the men managed to flee.

“The duo was beaten up by the villagers in a fit of rage. Investigation in the case is underway,” the police said.

 

The bodies of the deceased have been sent for postmortem.

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