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High Court Explains What Premises Come Within Jhuggi Cluster Notified As Per The Delhi Slum And Jj Rehabilitation And Relocation Policy, 2015

Saurabh Uttam Kamble ,
  23 March 2023       Share Bookmark

Court :
High Court of Delhi
Brief :

Citation :
2023:DHC:1934-DB

Case title:

Keshaw Sanyasi Gawo Shewasharam vs Govt Of Nct & Anr

Date of Order:

17 of MARCH, 2023

Bench:

Hon'ble Mr. Justice Subramonium Prasad

Parties:

Petitioner: Keshaw Sanyasi Gawo Shewasharam

Respondent: Govt Of Nct & Anr

IMPORTANT PROVISIONS:

  • The Delhi Slum and JJ Rehabilitation and Relocation Policy, 2015

Part A, Section 2(1)-  Eligibility of rehabilitation or relocation- JJ bastis that have come up before 01-01-2006 shall not be removed without providing them alternate housing. Jhuggis that have come up in these bastis before 01-01-2015 shall not be demolished providing alternate housing.

Part A, Section 2(2) – No new Jhuggis allowed in Delhi after 01-01-2015.

Part A, Section 2(4) - In-Situ rehabilitation of JJ Bastis on land belonging to other land-owning agencies

Part B, Section 1 - Eligibility criteria for rehabilitation and relocation benefits- Jhuggi jhopri in which dwellers are residing must be in existence prior to 01-01-2006. However, for eligibility for rehabilitation residing shall be 01-01-2015

Part B, Section 3 – Appellant Authority for redressal of grievance will be constituted by Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB)

Part B, Section 4- Terms and conditions of allotment of alternative dwelling unit.

  • THE DELHI URBAN SHELTER IMPROVEMENT BOARD ACT, 2010:

Section 41- Issue of notice to show cause against an order of eviction- The board shall issue in the manner hereinafter provided a notice in writing calling upon all persons concerned to show cause why an order of eviction should not be made.

OVERVIEW: 

  • The Hon'ble High Court while dismissing the appeal against the order issued on February 10, 2023 by the Ld. Single Judge in W.P.(C) No. 1726/2023 stated the premises in question do not fall within the jhuggi cluster, which has been designated in accordance with the Delhi Slum and JJ Rehabilitation and Relocation Policy, 2015. 
  • As a result, the knowledgeable Single Judge decided that the building's residents lacked a right to protection from demolition. 
  • The court found no basis to overturn the Ld. Single Judge's Order of 10.02.2023 in W.P.(C) No. 1726/2023 because the Impugned Notice already included a provision for an alternative accommodation, therefore no orders had to be made.

ISSUES RAISED: The Appellant was aggrieved by the Eviction Notice and filed the W.P.(C) No.1726/2023 seeking quashing of the Impugned Notice and the issuance of appropriate directions prohibiting the Respondents from carrying out demolition/evacuation proceedings in the said premises.

ARGUMENTS ADVANCED BY THE APPELLANT:  

  • The learned attorney for the appellant has claimed that the premises in question have housed a cow shelter and a temple for more than 15 years, and that the impugned notice is arbitrary and illegitimate. 
  • It is the position of the Appellant that the region in question where the Gaushala is situated is near a recognized cluster area and, thus, the Appellant is likewise entitled to the protection of the Policy.

ARGUMENTS ADVANCED BY THE RESPONDENT: 

  • The learned Attorney for the Respondent has justified the Impugned Order by drawing the Court's attention to the fact that the location of the property does not fall under any cluster that has been designated under the 2015 Delhi Slum and JJ Rehabilitation Relocation Policy. 
  • As a result, the said premises cannot have their demolition delayed.

JUDGEMENT ANALYSIS:

  • A Division Bench of this Court upheld the Delhi Slum and JJ Rehabilitation Relocation Policy, 2015 in Sudama Singh v. Government of Delhi, 168 (2010) DLT 218. For the rehabilitation of Jhuggi residents, the government created the Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board Act, 2010 (DUSIB).
  • According to the DUSIB Act read with the aforementioned Policy, a jhuggi jhopri basti cluster, as defined by the Act, must have existed before to 01.01.2006 and the individual must have built his jhuggi within the cluster prior to 01.01.2015 in order to profit from the aforementioned Policy. To determine which clusters were eligible to receive the benefits of the aforementioned Policy, a survey was undertaken.
  • In Vaishali Via Next Friend and Others v. Union of India and Others, 2022 SCC OnLine Del 2086, a Division Bench of this Court decided whether or not clusters that have not been recognised are entitled to the benefit of the stated Policy. Court has also held that the appellants were required to demonstrate that their JJ basti had been in operation prior to January 1, 2006 in order to receive the benefits of the aforementioned Policy.
  • Regarding the appellants' reliance on the Draft Protocol, the same again only applies to a JJ basti that existed before January 1, 2006, as well as how such a judgement is to be made. The categorical stance of the respondents in this matter is that the appellants' case was decided in this way, and the Sarojini Nagar cluster of jhuggis was not found to exist as of January 1, 2006, hence it was not registered under the Act. If the appellants were to contest the aforementioned, it would be a contested factual issue that, in any case, cannot be resolved in a writ jurisdiction. As a result, the appellants cannot be helped by the Draft Protocol.
  • The jhuggi must be located inside a jhuggi jhopri basti that was established before January 1, 2006 in order to receive the benefits of the aforementioned Policy, and it must have existed prior to January 1, 2015 within the jhuggi jhopri basti that was established before January 1, 2006 and has been designated by the DUSIB as one of the clusters that is entitled to the benefit of rehabilitation under the DUSIB Policy. As In the above case the conditions are not satisfied, the Hon’ble court decided in favor of the respondents.

CONCLUSION:

Even while the Delhi government has attempted to rehabilitate jhuggi residents on paper, the actual situation is far from ideal. Since the right to housing is intertwined with the rights to a livelihood, health, food, clean water, sewage, and transportation amenities, these facilities must be made available to those who will be relocated.

The policy provides for the provision of alternate accommodations to eligible Jhuggi dwellers. The alternate accommodation may be in the form of a rental accommodation, transit camp, or permanent dwelling unit. The policy provides compensation for loss of property to the Jhuggi dwellers whose dwelling units have been demolished or who have been evicted due to any other reason. The policy provides for the in-situ development of the slums, which means that the slums will be developed at the same location where they are currently located. However, this option will only be considered if the slum is not located on government land, and if it is possible to provide basic amenities such as water, sanitation, and electricity. The Supreme Court of India has repeatedly emphasized that jhuggi dwellers have the right to shelter and basic amenities, and the government must take steps to provide them with alternative housing and basic services

 
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