The purpose of these policies is to ensure rehabilitation and relocation to economically weaker sections and would have to be interpreted in a broader and beneficial manner rather than a narrow and pedantic manner: Delhi High Court
W.P.(C) 315/2020 and CM APPL. 929/2020
SMT. BENI vs GOVERNMENT OF NCT DELHI AND ANR
The current petition was filed by the Petitioner- Smt. Beni, who was a resident of Jhuggi No.27, Kali Bari Marg, G-Point, Gole Market, New Delhi along with her husband and children, between 2001 till 2010. The writ petition questioning the orders of the Appellate Board of DUSIB. Matter before the JUSTICE PRATHIBA M. SINGH
FACTS OF THE CASE
The husband of the Petitioner deserted her in 2009 and the entire JJ cluster was demolished in 2010. According to the Petitioner, she is entitled to relocation and rehabilitation, as per the policy of the GNCTD. She, accordingly, along with her jhuggi dwellers filed the W.P.(C) 1798/2011 titled ‘Dharampal Singh & Ors. Vs. GNCT of Delhi and Ors.’.
The above mentioned petition was disposed on 10th October. As per this order, all such dwellers who were found to be eligible were to be relocated, as per DUSIB’s policy.
The GNCTD issued guidelines through ‘Guidelines for implementation of the Scheme for relocation/rehabilitation and allotment of flats to the Jhuggi Jhopri dwellers under JNNURM-2013’ (‘JJ Scheme’). The Petitioner had applied for rehabilitation under this scheme.
The Eligibility Determining Committee held a camp from the 5th January, 2016 to 15th January, 2016. Out of the 85 jhuggi dwellers, who had filed the petition, only 52 were found to be entitled to rehabilitation. The Petitioner was declared ineligible.
The Petitioner challenged the declaration of in-eligibility before the Appellate Board of DUSIB. The Board rejected the appeal of the Petitioner on the ground that she did was not able to produce the voter ID card for the year 2009 and 2010.
Learned counsel for the Petitioner contended that as per the scheme, various other documents could be accepted as the proof of residence in the jhuggi. The Petitioner contended that her rejection was contrary to the decision of the ld. Division Bench in W.P.(C) 5378/2017 titled ‘Udal and Ors. v. Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board and Ors’. Here, the same issue was being considered by the Court and it was held that the authority would have to take a holistic view in the matter. It was held that the inability of the parties to produce the name featuring electoral roll, would not be enough for disqualification of jhuggi jhopri dwellers for rehabilitation.
The respondents contended that the guidelines clearly state that the voter ID card is mandatory and other documents would be in addition to the voter ID card only.
The Petitioner submitted various school records of her two daughters to establish that she was resident of the said jhuggi. She also relies upon her own bank records, bank passbook etc. for this purpose. Respondents had raised various objections and attempted to show contradictions in the documents of the school records of her daughter.
The Court stated that the Appellate Board would have to consider all other documents as well before arriving at a conclusion as to whether the Petitioner is entitled to rehabilitation or not.
The Court was of the opinion that the Petitioner’s case could not be rejected merely on the ground of a non-produced voter ID.
The Court emphasized on the purpose of these policies. Which was to ensure rehabilitation and relocation to economically weaker sections and thus have to be interpreted in a broader and beneficial manner rather than a narrow and pedantic manner.
The Court directed the Appellate Authority under the DUSIB Act to look afresh into the Petitioner’s case to consider all other documents produced by her and take a decision on the same within a period of 4 months. Thus, disposing of the writ petition.
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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY ADITYA G S.
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