A division bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court comprising Justice Surya Kant and Justice R P Nagrath on Tuesday took suo-moto notice of the paying guest accommodation policy framed by Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) in July 2008.
While rejecting the petition filed by Paying Guest Association and owners of residential accommodation in Mohali with regard to the policy to regulate such facilities and give liberty to the petitioners to reply to the showcause notices issued to them by the GMADA estate officer,the court issued notices to GMADA and principal secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development,Punjab,asking them to showcause why the policy framed by GMADA be not quashed.
The Bench observed that the policy aimed at giving licence to use residential accommodation for commercial activities had become a source of various illegal activities. The case will now come up for hearing on May 8.
The petitioners had stated that in view of a Supreme Court judgment the paying guest accommodation did not amount to commercial activity. Counsel for the petitioners had also stated that under the allotment letters issued to them,they had full discretion to rent out their residential accommodation,and GMADA had no authority to issue showcause notices to them to resume their residential plots on the ground that the petitioners were using their residential accommodation to run paying guest accommodation. The Bench was,however,not impressed by the arguments,although the bench was of the view that GMADA did not have the power to frame such a policy.