Narendra Modi

PM Modi’s pet project NH-24: NHAI begins demolition drive in east Delhi

PM Modi’s pet project NH-24 sees light of the day: NHAI begins demolition drive in east Delhi.The expansion project aims to provide snarl-free drive from the city to Meerut as the highway widens to 14 lanes.

 The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has started razing residential buildings in east Delhi in order to widen NH24 – a pet project of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

However, around 10 houses got relief after they moved the court and presented documents of ownership.

Mail Today earlier reported that houses of around 170 families in east Delhi received eviction notice from the ministry of road transport and highways that their houses would be razed for widening of NH24. The expansion project aims to provide snarl-free drive from the city to Meerut as the highway widens to 14 lanes.

 Following the notice to evict houses in seven days, few residents moved court challenging the notice. NHAI official claims that close to 10 houses have produced valid documents of the property and now have been exempted from demolition.

“We have started the demolition drive. Close to 10 houses have been exempted from it, while others have started wrapping up as they will get the compensation,” said a NHAI officer. By August end, they will finish the process of demolitions in Delhi. Several houses were razed using JCBs on Sunday morning.

The government in its earlier notice claimed that residents were “unauthorised occupants”, who have occupied government land.

Challenging it, the residents produced documents that they have been living there for several decades and have got their houses registered. They showed paid bills of development charge to DDA, apart from water, electricity and house tax bills in their defence.

“The main contention put forth by the occupants was that their colony was established in 1952 by Delhi Housing Company much before the existence of the present NH24 and no notice of unauthorised accomodation has ever been issued to them by the concerned authorities. They raised concern that the joint survey report, based on which occupants have been declared unauthorised on the highway land has been prepared without considering revenue records and is contrary to the sanction plan of the colony by Delhi government,” they said.

The report establishes that encroachment in shape of pucca structures exist in C, E and F blocks of Pandav Nagar, and in Samaspur Jagir between Patparganj underpass and Akshardham.

However, a fresh survey was done after the resident moved court. Despite declaring these structures “illegal”, the government has prepared a compensation package of Rs 32,000 per square metre on “humanitarian ground”, but residents claim it is four-five times lesser than market value.

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