GHMC, HMDA get 6 weeks over Hussainsagar land grab

GHMC and HMDA chiefs to appear before it if they did not file their counters in the PIL

Hyderabad: The Telangana High Court on Saturday gave the final chance to the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) and the Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) to file their contentions on a petition which challenged their inaction in taking steps to protect the Hussainsagar from encroachments.

The court asked the GHMC and HMDA chiefs to appear before it if they did not file their counters in the PIL about the encroachment of land within the draft Hussainsagar full tank level and building of structures in blatant violation of the law within six weeks. It expressed its anger with the casual attitude of authorities as they had been dragging the matter without filing the counter for nearly two years.

A division bench comprising Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Abhinand Kumar Shavili was dealing with a pending PIL, which was based on an email sent to the Chief Justice in February 2020 by social activist Lubna Sarwath.

She brought to the notice of the court that around 10 acres of Hussainsagar FTL land were encroached and roads were laid. She submitted that some constructions were going on in the encroached area. Geo-tagging pictures along with coordinates were attached with the email sent to the court.

Responding to the mail, the court appointed designated senior counsel L. Ravichander as amicus curiae and had directed the GHMC and HMDA to explain the contentions raised by the petitioner. Even after giving several chances to file a counter, the authorities failed to do so.

While expressing its displeasure with the authorities involved, the division bench asked them to submit their counters and, if they failed to do so, to appear before the court and explain their reasons on August 23.

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