Officials from the Geospatial Department of the Delhi government Friday asked the Delhi High Court to accept a report containing satellite images of the encroachments at the posh Sainik Farms colony “in a sealed cover”, claiming that “terrorists may find places to hide” if the photographs are made public.
The officials told the court that the “national policy” stated that satellite maps of areas that included “Army areas” cannot be shared with “private parties”.
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Amused at the request, a bench of Justice Badar Durrez Ahmed and Justice Jayant Nath initially asked how the images could be considered “sensitive”, noting that “everything is available on Google Maps these days”.
The court allowed the Delhi government to file the DVDs in a sealed cover.
The bench, which had last month banned entry of all commercial vehicles except public vehicles and school buses in the area, took a dig at the Residents Welfare Association, after it argued that material for “wedding functions” could not enter the area due to the ban.
“What wedding functions? All marriages have been postponed these days. Why are you worried?” said the bench, refusing to lift the ban on entry of vehicles. The ban was imposed after the court found “rampant” unauthorised construction in the area despite ban on entry of construction material.
The court has been monitoring the issue of unauthorised construction in the Sainik farms area as per a PIL filed in 2014.
The Delhi Police also filed a report before the court, giving details of 769 complaints regarding unauthorised constructions sent by the police to the SDMC between 2008 and 2016.