Dismissing a farmers' society's plea seeking to restrain DDA from taking over the land on the banks of the Yamuna river, the Delhi High Court said it was an attempting to cling on to the land while they have been held to be unauthorised occupants.
It said since records show that members of the petitioner society, Yamuna Bank Kishan Bachao Morcha, are in unlawful occupation, the relief for compensation on the ground of DDA damaging the crop is not maintainable.
The high court said the society's members have violated the undertaking given to the Supreme Court that they would vacate the area by December 2019.
"This writ petition is nothing but an abuse of the process of law and another attempt by the members of the petitioner society to cling on to the land while they have already been held to be unauthorised occupants and encroachers," Justice Subramonium Prasad said.
The high court said since the society claimed its members are farmers, the court was not imposing costs on the petitioner and dismissed the petition.
It said the petition showed the petitioners are growing crops in the land which is prohibited by a 2015 order of the National Green Tribunal.
The society, in its plea, said it consists of farmers who had inhabited on the banks of the Yamuna river for over 100 years cultivating about 15,000 bighas of land.
It said the members have proof of 'lagaan' being since 1932 till 2012, that the farmers were growing radish, brinjal, potato and onion and they cannot be deprived of the land without following the procedure as laid down under the law.
The plea said on November 8, 2020, DDA officials gathered at the Bela Estate with earth-moving machines and with police to evict the members of the society with an "intent to grab the land".
The Delhi Development Authority (DDA), represented through advocate Prabhsahay Kaur, said the NGT had held that Yamuna Plains are to be protected and no encroachment of any kind is permitted there.
It said DDA has been entrusted with an affirmative duty to protect the river, its morphology and its flood plains. In a bid to fulfil this mandate and keep the Yamuna floodplains encroachment free, the DDA undertakes regular demolition and removal actions, it said.
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