Delhi High Court asks authorities to enforce no-squatting policy in Nehru Place market

It is directed by the Court that the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), Delhi Development Authority (DDA), and the city police will file a status report on the matter.

The Division Bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Jasmeet Singh asked the authorities to hold a joint meeting to remove the vendors under the no-squatting policy.

It is directed by the Court that the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), Delhi Development Authority (DDA), and the city police will file a status report on the matter and regular drives be conducted in the Nehru Place area by the SDMC and the Delhi police, along with the assistance of the local SHO, so that the vendors, once removed, do not return.

Due to a short circuit in an electric board, a fire had broken out on Thursday, inside the showroom on the first floor of a multi-storey building in southeast Delhi’s Nehru Place following which six fire tenders were rushed to the spot to bring the flame under control.

The court observed while taking note of a video of the fire, that the fire engine struggled a lot to reach the spot due to the presence of hawkers.

Advocate Sanjay Lao, standing counsel (criminal) of the Delhi government, informed the court that many vendors are covered by stay orders of the court, allowing them to squat in the area.

Moreover, Advocate Divya Prakash Pande, appearing for SDMC, argued that the PWD is carrying out construction work in the area and hence should be impleaded as a party.

While considering the submission the court asked the authorities to sit together and solve the issue, while also asking them to file status reports on the no-hawking and no-vending policies, and the steps that can be taken to stop illegal occupation on the roads. The bench also issued notice to the Public Works Department (PWD) of the Delhi government, seeking clarification on their role in the construction work at the Nehru place area while posting the matter on August 24 for further hearing.

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