Division Bench Seeks Details Of Buildings In Gulmarg

SRINAGAR: High Court on Friday directed the various departments concerning with the Gulmarg tourist resort to come up with a fresh affidavit indicating therein the position of all existing buildings, details of such buildings as also the unauthorized structures and any action taken so far against violators and reiterated its ban on any construction in and around the resort, Daily Excelsior reported

Hearing a Public Interest Litigation on protection and preservation of the environs of the resort, the Division Bench of Chief Justice Pankaj Mithal and Justice Vinod Chatterji Koul directed the Gulmarg Development Authority, Tourism Department, Revenue Department, Forest Department as also the Building Operation Controlling Authority to inform the court with regard to existing buildings and their details to the court in shape of an affidavit.

The DB also directed the Chief Executive Officer GDA, Chairman BOCA, Director Tourism, Chief Conservator Forests and Divisional Commissioner to clearly indicate in their affidavits the unauthorized buildings existing in and around the resort and any action taken against them within a period of six weeks.

Since the court did not deem it necessary for the time being to have the assistance of any amicus curiae or of any Commissioner or the committee and relieved any amicus curiae appointed earlier and also the Commissioners and Committees appointed from time to time in the matter.

“The Committee(s), if any, shall also stand dissolved. It is made clear that on filing of the affidavits as directed, if necessary, the Court may consider for the appointment of amicus curiae, Commissioner or a committee afresh subsequently”, the DB said.

With regard to any constructional activity in and around the resort, the DB said the earlier directions of the Court stopping of construction activities at Gulmarg and Tangmarg, shall remain in operation and made it clear that if any person is found violating the same and continues with the construction activities the property shall be sealed forthwith and that no building or construction material shall be allowed to be transported in the area.

The DB directed the Deputy Commissioner, Baramulla, SSP, Baramulla and the Gulmarg Development Authority to ensure that no construction activities are carried out without the leave of the Court. “The Court, however, do not intend to usurp or take over the functions of the Development Authority or the BOCA and, as such, leaves it open for the authorities to entertain applications for the repairs and constructions of the buildings in accordance with the Master Plan and the By-laws but the sanction, if any, shall not be implemented without taking prior approval of the Court”, read the order.

The DB said the litigation is pending since 2012 and from time-to-time various directions have been issued and at the same time the Court has observed that since the court is Custodia Legis, no other court or tribunal shall pass any order dealing with the subject matter concerning the PIL.

The DB also said that no illegal constructions are raised in the tourist places of Gulmarg and Tangmag and that the ecology and environment of the said areas is duly preserved and that if any unauthorised constructions are in existence they be removed in accordance with law.

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