Arrest warrant against HUDA Chief Administrator for delaying compensation

Chandigarh court

The Hush Post: A local court has issued arrest warrants against the chief administrator of Haryana Shehri Vikas Pradhikaran (HSVP), formerly Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA). The warrants have been issued for not appearing before it following a show-cause notice and bail able warrants for non-payment of compensation to the petitioners.

The case is related to enhanced compensation in lieu of acquired land to develop new residential areas in Trans-Ghaggar Sectors 24-28 in Panchkula.

In an order issued by the court of additional district and sessions judge Neerja Kulwant Kalson on July 10, the development authority was given 15 days to make the payments on rates fixed according to the Supreme Court (SC) judgment last year. The deadline ends on July 25 as per a report in The Hindustan Times.

“Despite service of the judgement, chief administrator, HUDA, Panchkula, through bailable warrants, he has failed to appear in the court, waiting sufficiently, nor the payment of the decretal amount has been made,” the court order says.

“Let warrants of arrest be issued against the chief administrator returnable on August 1, 2018. However, he is given a period of 15 days to make the payment and in case the requisite payment is made, in that eventuality the warrants of arrest be kept into abeyance,” the order reads further.

The court has directed the Panchkula deputy commissioner of police to get the warrants executed by deputing an official not below the rank of an assistant commissioner of police.

The court order mentioned that the SC reduced the compensation from ₹380 per square yard — as ordered by the Punjab and Haryana high court in 2016 — to ₹290 per square yard in its judgment in October last year and directed the state of Haryana to make the payment along with statutory benefits within three months. But it wasn’t done even after an execution petition.

The court observed: “On issuance of show-cause notice, they chose not to appear in the court at least to explain the reasons why payment has not been made, compelling this court to issue bailable warrants. But again they did not appear in the court. Under these circumstances, this court is left with no other option except to adopt more stringent methods.”

HUDA had acquired 1,200 acres of land at the rate of ₹1 lakh per acre in Ramgarh and adjoining areas in 1989 to develop residential areas across-Ghaggar, Panchkula. Not satisfied with the award money, the landowners approached the district courts for additional compensation, which enhanced the land compensation by ₹250 per square yard in 2009.

Plot owners got a further jolt when the Punjab and Haryana high court increased it further to ₹380 per square yard in April 2016. Following this, both HUDA and residents approached the Supreme Court, where the counsel representing them challenged the HC award on the grounds that the compensation should not be more than ₹280 per square yard, given the land value. The SC in its orders agreed to the state government’s stand and reduced the compensation, with directions that it be paid to the farmers within three months from the release of the judgment.

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