The Allahabad High Court on Monday directed the chief secretary of Uttar Pradesh to ensure that squatters, believed to be followers of a religious cult, were “dispossessed” of land belonging to UP State Industrial Corporation in Mathura. A division bench comprising justices Arun Tandon and Sangeeta Chandra also asked the state government to ensure adequate deployment of forces so that “Dera Sacha Sauda-like incidents do not take place in UP” while evicting the encroachers.
The order came on a Public Interest Litigation filed by Mathura resident Rajendra Singh who had drawn the court’s attention towards the land which belonged to UPSIDC and was meant for setting up a park.
During the course of hearing it was submitted before the court that the occupants of the land were followers of a religious cult Jai Guru Dev.
Incidentally, Mathura had last year witnessed large-scale violence, resulting in the death of more than 20 people including two police officials, during eviction of squatters from a public park called Jawahar Bagh.
The court asked the chief secretary to issue show cause notices to the occupants within a week and “dispossess” them of the land if it was found that they were occupying the land illegally.
The court fixed September 18 as the next date of hearing in the matter.