DB directives in PIL regarding Gharana Wet Land

JAMMU, DEC 30: In a much publicized Public Interest Litigation regarding preserving Gharana Wetland, Division Bench of State High Court comprising Chief Justice Badar Durrez Ahmed and Justice Sanjeev Kumar issued directions.
When the PIL came-up for hearing, Division Bench observed that counsel appearing on behalf of the Forest and Wild Life Department submitted that the area which is immediately required has been marked on the spot through poles after taking GPS readings of each such pole. The exact points shall be marked out on a map based on the GPS readings. Upon this, the Division Bench directed the Revenue authorities to identify ownership/occupation in respect of the area so marked out. DB further directed that the report of the revenue authority be submitted within four days.
DB further observed that the land falling within the perimeter of these poles may be utilized for the purpose of preserving the Gharana Wetland, however, that will be subject to final orders of this Court. In case the respondents need to acquire any land for the purposes of preserving the wetland at Gharana, they may take appropriate steps under the J&K Land Acquisition Act, 1990 (1934 AD) in accordance with the provisions thereof.
Division Bench observed that this order has been passed with the consent of the petitioners because they have fairly stated that they are also interested in preservation of the Wetland, provided their rights are also protected. DB further observed that while considering issue of compensation, which may be payable to villagers whose land may be acquired, acquiring authority shall first consider to provide the villagers land in lieu of the land that they are taking and also try to settle compensation through negotiations with villagers and this latter part of the order is a direction based on the fact that all the parties here are concerned about preservation of the Wetland at Gharana. (JNF)