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Illegal construction in park: Allahabad HC sees collusion between officials and contractor

Manish Goyal, Additional Advocate General, on instructions, submitted that Rural Engineering Services (RES) is not responsible for the ongoing constructions as a contractor of the said organization is raising constructions at his own instance with which the organization has no concern.

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The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday prima facie termed the inaction of officials a “collusion” with a contractor, for not taking action on the illegal construction being done in a park, with full knowledge of the government in Allahpur (Prayagraj).

The division bench of Justices Pankaj Naqvi and Jayant Banerji passed this order while hearing a Public Interest Litigation filed by Shailesh Chandra Mishra.

The petition said that this is a serious issue involving environmental concern as the contention of the petitioner is that constructions are being raised in a public park situated at Allahpur, Prayagraj. The provisions of Uttar Pradesh Parks, Playgrounds and Open Spaces (Preservation and Regulation) Act, 1975 prohibit any construction activity in a public park without the permission of the competent authority.

Manish Goyal, Additional Advocate General, on instructions, submitted that Rural Engineering Services (RES) is not responsible for the ongoing constructions as a contractor of the said organization is raising constructions at his own instance with which the organization has no concern.

“If what Goyal states is factually correct, then it further assumes seriousness in view of the fact that even though the RES is aware of the ongoing illegal construction activities in a public park, yet no action was taken by them, or the Nagar Nigam, which maintains the park, against the errant contractor which, prima facie, indicates a collusion between the authorities and the contractor,” the Court said.

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“We wanted to take a coercive view against the guilty official(s) but on the insistence of Goyal, we adjourn the matter to day after tomorrow so as to enable him to apprise the Court what deterrent, punitive and restitutive actions have been taken by the officials. This order shall also be communicated by him to the District Magistrate, Prayagraj forthwith,” the Court ordered.

The Court has fixed the next hearing of the Petition on June 4.

Source: ILNS

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