New Delhi, Jul 7: The Delhi High Court has expressed displeasure over the presence of industries in the residential areas and "failure" of the authorities to relocate them to designated sites on the outskirts of the city.
A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar said that continuing with the industrial units in the non-conforming or residential areas amounts to a violation of the Supreme Court's directions against such practice.
The court made the Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd (DSIIDC) and North Delhi Power Limited (NDPL) as parties in the case and sought their response by August 10 on what action can be taken against the defaulting units.
It said there is no reason for people who were alloted land in the industrial areas of Narela and Bawana here to relocate their units should continue to hold those plots, alloted by DSIIDC, despite not shifting to that place. The bench noted in its order that such industrial areas were set up by the government at a huge cost to the public exchequer.
It said that non-shifting of the units to industrial areas was not only contempt of the apex court's orders, but also punishable under the Delhi Municipal Corporations Act, IPC and the Criminal Procedure Code. The bench noted that despite the seriousness of the violation, no action has been reported.
The court also observed that while the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) has claimed to have sealed 339 properties, it has not given the dates when such action was taken.
"Clearly officials of the NDMC have connived in the same and their liability has to be fixed," the bench said and sought details of the corporation's officials posted in the area during the relevant period.
The court also directed the NDMC to carry out a fresh inquiry of the industries and inform the bench about the zone-wise details of the units within two weeks from July 6.
"The details shall disclose the date of commencement of the industrial activity and date of the sealing of properties," the bench said.
The NDMC has been directed to provide a list of the sealed units to the DSIIDC and the NDPL within two weeks. DSIIDC has been asked to place on record, within two weeks, the persons who were alloted land in the two industrial areas but have not relocated their units there.
DSIIDC, in an affidavit, also has to disclose why required action has not been taken against those allottees who have not moved to the plots given to them in the industrial area.