97 Kanal land for Cattle Pound

JAMMU, JUL 21: In a significant order a Division Bench of the J&K High Court comprising Justice Tashi Rabstan and Justice Sanjay Kumar Gupta has expressed displeasure/ anguish over the contents of a communication dated June, 14, 2018 written by Divisional Commissioner Jammu to the Financial Commissioner (Revenue) J&K wherein the Divisional Commissioner Jammu has pointed out about compensation involved in the transfer of state land measuring 97 Kanals 11 Marlas under Khasra No.35 situated at Village Seri Khurd, Tehsil Nagrota District Jammu in favour of JMC identified for establishing a cattle pound for housing stray cattles.
The Division Bench headed by Justice Tashi Rabstan took serious note of the communication dated June, 14, 2018 and observed, “We are surprised to see the contents of communication dated 14-06-2018 of Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, wherein the Divisional Commissioner, Jammu has mentioned about compensation of R 5,40,15,500 for acquisition of State land, although, the communication of Deputy Commissioner Jammu clearly revealed that the land in question is a state land. The Divisional Commissioner Jammu has to explain under what circumstances the compensation was sought from the Financial Commissioner Revenue.”
After hearing Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed with Advocates Rahul Raina, Suraj Singh and Supriya Chouhan appearing for the PIL filed by an NGO (SAVE) through its Chairperson Devinder Kour Madaan alias Rumpy Madaan, whereas Advocate Sachin Gupta for JMC, Advocate Amita Khajuria for Food Safety and Standard Authority of India New Delhi and Senior AAG H.A. Siddiqui appearing for Divisional Commissioner Jammu, the Division Bench headed by Justice Tashi Rabstan directed Senior AAG H.A. Siddiqui to file compliance to this extent on behalf of Divisional Commissioner Jammu whereby compensation for state land has been worked out.
The Division Bench also took serious note of the non-filing of the affidavit by the State Pollution Control Board pursuant to the directions passed by the Division Bench on May, 29, 2018 and observed with annoyance that neither anyone appeared on behalf of State Pollution Control Board nor affidavit has been filed. Accordingly the Member Secretary State Pollution Control Board is directed to remain present in person alongwith affidavit on the next date of hearing.
When this much publicized PIL seeking closure of 59 illegal/ unregistered milk dairies running within the limits of Jammu Municipal Corporation and also for regulating the functioning of existing 57 number of registered dairies as per the existing norms and guidelines issued by JMC under Section 44(n) of Jammu Municipal Corporation Act, 2000 came up for hearing, Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed appearing for the petitioner submitted that a fresh compliance report has been filed by Jammu Municipal Corporation in terms of order dated May, 29, 2018 wherein it is submitted that JMC took up the matter of possession of land identified for cattle pound with the Deputy Commissioner Jammu and the Deputy Commissioner Jammu referred the matter to the Divisional Commissioner Jammu and it was further divulged that the office of the Divisional Commissioner Jammu vide communication dated June, 14, 2018 has submitted the case to Financial Commissioner (Revenue) for taking up the matter with the Administrative Department for transfer of the land in favour of Housing and Urban Development Department.
Advocate S.S. Ahmed vociferously argued that JMC, Deputy Commissioner Jammu and Divisional Commissioner Jammu are just exchanging letters and till date the possession of the land for cattle pound has not been taken over by the Jammu Municipal Corporation when the land measuring 97 Kanals stands already identified. Advocate Ahmed further submitted that there is complete non-serious approach by the officers of the JMC in taking over the possession and the Division Bench on April, 9, 2018 had categorically directed that no further time limit will be granted.
After considering the submissions of Advocate S.S. Ahmed appearing for the PIL the Division Bench headed by Justice Tashi Rabstan while expressing its displeasure/anguish over the contents of a communication dated June, 14, 2018 sought the explanation of Divisional Commissioner Jammu before the next date of hearing and the Division Bench further directed Member Secretary State Pollution Control Board to remain present in person alongwith affidavit on the next date of hearing. JNF