There is a good news in store for kids and morning walkers of north Delhi as a government body has told the Delhi High Court that it would raze all encroachments, including religious structures, from parks. The Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) also told a bench of Justice Vibhu Bakhru that demolition of illegal structures on the public land at Metro Vihar Phase-I and Phase-II of Holambi Kalan area in north Delhi was planned on September 19, but could not be effected due to lack of police force.
The DUSIB’s reply came on a plea by three individuals, who had alleged that the authorities had failed to take action against some religious structures situated in various parks in the vicinity of the Metro Vihar. In view of the stand taken by the Board, the court dismissed their plea saying “the apprehension expressed by the petitioners that only one religious structure is being targeted is wholly unfounded”.
It also directed the police to “cooperate and provide necessary force to the DUSIB and the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) to carry out the necessary action”. Advocate Shahid Ali, appearing for the three petitioners, had claimed that the authorities were only demolishing a mosque, Bilal Masjid, and was not taking the same action against other allegedly illegal structures located there. They claimed that they should not be “singled out” and “removed” alone particularly when the status of other religious places situated in the vicinity is the same.
However, the petitioners’ contentions were opposed by the DUSIB and NDMC, who said the said structure admittedly being illegal was now subject to demolition. They also said that “there are encroachments on public places where other religious structures have also been raised and action is also being carried out for removal of those structures as well”.