Gauhati High Court disposes PIL pertaining to grievances related to encroachments in public places

The Gauhati High Court disposed of a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed with the grievances related to encroachments over pasture land, catchment areas, ponds, rivers, lakes, public places, burial grounds etc.

Advocate General has placed on record the Notification dated 24.05.2023 issued by the Revenue & Disaster Management Department, Settlement Branch, Assam, as per which, Public Land Protection Cells (PLPC) have been notified for three different categories;

(i) Rural Areas,

(ii) Municipal Areas other than Guwahati

(iii) Guwahati Municipal Area.

The cells have been empowered to redress the grievances .

The Division Bench of Chief Justice Sandeep Mehta and Justice Suman Shyam feeled that with the constitution of these cells, the grievances of public at large pertaining to encroachments upon these categories of land would be redressed at the earliest and the litigants would not be compelled to rush to the courts. We appreciate the efforts made by the State Government in issuing the notification with the hope and trust that the cells will function efficiently.

The petitioner who has raised grievance of encroachment upon Kabarsthan land is relegated to approach the PLPC concerned for ventilating his grievances.The Court said that the PLPC shall address the grievance of the petitioner in light of the above notification and shall hear the parties concerned before taking any action of dispossession etc .

"The complaint may be filed by the petitioner along with the copy of this order within a period of 15 (fifteen) days from today whereupon the PLPC after hearing all the parties concerned and making the necessary enquiries, shall decide the same by a reasoned order within a period of 3 (three) months from the date of receipt thereof. In case, the petitioner is aggrieved of the reason so passed, the petitioner shall be at liberty to assail such order as per law", the order reads.