12 illegal structures around airport razed

Zirakpur MC had sought police protection for drive

Satinder Pal Singh

Zirakpur, February 20

After a rap from the High Court, the Zirakpur Municipal Council today finally swung into action and demolished 12 illegal godowns near Bhabat village falling within a radius of 100 metres from the boundary wall of the Indian Air Force Station in Zirakpur.

The Zirakpur MC had written to the district police seeking protection for carrying out a drive to demolish illegal structures in compliance with the High Court orders. After being assured of police security, the MC decided to demolish the illegal buildings. The enforcement wing of the Zirakpur MC was led by the SDM, Dera Bassi, Kuldeep Bawa, and was accompanied by nearly 250 police personnel, including women constables. Officials of the IAF were also present during the drive.

Amid heated arguments between owners of these commercial godowns and MC officials, the demolition drive started at 10.30 am at Bhabat village. Sources said notices had already been issued to the occupants of the demolished structures to evict the premises.

MC Executive Officer Manvir Singh Gill said, “We have demolished 12 illegal structures, primarily godowns, situated within 100 metres from the boundary wall of the IAF Station. The demolition has been carried out on High Court orders.”

The Executive Officer said razing of illegal establishments would continue as per the norms. “We have just followed the law,” he said.

Manvir Singh said earlier the drive was deferred on January 6 due to cold conditions. It could not be conducted on January 7 and then on January 20 due to non-availability of a security cover, he said.

On February 11, Mohali Deputy Commissioner Girish Daylan had clarified that there was no stay either by the Supreme Court or the High Court on the demolition of the 81 structures falling within a radius of 100 metres from the boundary wall of the defence installation.

Following orders of the High Court, the district administration had, in September last year, given a 15-day notice to the owners of 98 illegal structures falling within a 100-metre radius of the airport boundary wall under the Works of Defence Act, 1903. Kuldeep Bawa, SDM, Dera Bassi, said the drive was carried out peacefully.

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