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Illegally constructed commercial buildings face demolition

Posted on Oct 11, 2013
VARANASI: Some commercial buildings at prime locations like Andhrapul may be demolished with the submission of a report by investigation team to district magistrate Pranjal Yadav.
After the completion of a flyover between Chowkaghat and Cantonment bus depot, the service lane was available on the western lane of the GT Road. Two months back, Yadav and SSP AK Mishra launched a drive for the widening of the road as a part of which the boundary walls of some commercial buildings were demolished.
The owners of two buildings sought compensation. One building owner (who possesses Araji no. 313) demanded Rs 86 lakhs as compensation while other (who possesses Araji no 299) sought Rs 1.09 crore. The DM constituted a team comprising chief revenue officer, special land acquisition officer, executive engineer of PWDs construction division-I and deputy registrar-III to check the status of land. The probe revealed startling facts and also exposed how the nexus of builders, officials and employees of government departments and local bodies worked to ‘swallow the land of the government of India.
This team submitted its report to the district magistrate on Tuesday. It came to light that the Araji number 299, which contained 7667.38 sq mts of land area (0.648 hectare), was allotted to Kamlakant Rai on April 17, 1909 in residential category. The period of patta expired in 1999. Now some other persons possess this land where multi-storeyed commercial building had been constructed in the recent past. This land is mentioned in the category of non-agricultural and for the use of road, railway line and buildings. This intra-najul land is the property of government of India and allotment of this land through patta or free holding is not under the jurisdiction of state government or municipal corporation.
Other plot (Araji number 313) of 6218.59 sq mt land area (0.648 hectare) was allotted to Mathura Prasad Kalwar through Patta on March 20, 1902. The patta expired on March 19, 1992. Presently, some other person possesses this property on which a showroom of an automobile company and a hotel are being operated. On May 1, 1995, a Delhi-based person had got this land converted as freehold in favour of 11 persons. But, on August 11, 2001, the then district magistrate cancelled the process of freehold by considering that patta had not been done in favour of those persons. As per law, no state government or local body has the right to allot the land of government of India through patta or make it freehold.
Due to it, the registry of land made to anyone by those persons would be considered as void and the construction done on this land would also become illegal as with the cancellation of freehold, the map sanctioned by Varanasi Development Authority would also be considered as cancelled. Against the order of district magistrate issued in 2001, civil writ petition (number 37671/2001) was also filed in Allahabad High Court, which was rejected by the court on May 21, 2003. Against this order, nobody moved the Supreme Court due to which the HCs order is effective in this case and the property belongs to government of India only.
With the exposure of these facts, the time for corrective measures and further action came. The DM said that first of all, the name of government of India would be included in the land revenue record registers as the owner of land by removing the names of encroachers. This process is expected to be completed by September 26. After it, notices would be issued to encroachers on September 27 to remove encroachments (buildings) within five days. If they failed to do so, the district administration will ensure the removal of encroachment.

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Mumbai developer launches project in Varanasi

Posted on Sep 12, 2013
One of the oldest real estate developers in Mumbai, S Raheja Realty has moved into Varanasi to develop 140 apartments totalling over two lakh sq ft.Ram S. Raheja, Director, S Raheja Realty, said it was a joint development project and local response has been good , considering that it would be 14-storey complex and among the first high-rise building ...
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