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Delhi HC asks Delhi govt for status report on plea filed by slum-dwellers against their eviction

The petitioners, who are residents of the slum, filed the matter as one of urgency as they are facing the threat of eviction following the eviction notice.

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The Delhi High Court has directed the Delhi Government and the Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) to file a status report on a plea filed by daily wage labourers and domestic workers, who are residents of JJ Basti, New Delhi against the eviction notice served by the Delhi Government’s Department of Forest & Wildlife. 

The single-judge bench of Justice Prathiba M. Singh on Wednesday directed the Delhi Government to file a status report. The matter would now be heard on May 31, 2021.

The petitioners, who are residents of the slum, filed the matter as one of urgency as they are facing the threat of eviction of themselves and their belongings following the eviction notice of the Department of Forest and Wildlife, who are carrying out a demolition drive of slums. 

The petitioner has made the following parties in the petition: Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB), Government of NCT of Delhi, Department of Forest and Wildlife, Delhi Development Authority, Commissioner of Police, Delhi and Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation.

The petition said that on March 23 this year, officials of the Forest Department served an eviction notice on some of the slum residents, asking them to vacate within 3 days and about 10-12 houses were demolished on March 30 and April 1.

According to the petition, all these residents are eligible for various government rehabilitation policies including Delhi Slum and JJ Rehabilitation and Relocation Policy, 2015 of DUSIB.

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The court noted that the slum comprises of more than 1000 houses, whose residents are mostly daily wage labourers and domestic workers, who have now lost their livelihood and exhausted their savings during the lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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