The Uttarakhand High Court has directed the Secretary, Uttarakhand State Estate Department to initiate proceedings for eviction of unauthorized occupants of government accommodations.

The Court has also directed to compile information in respect of all government accommodations which are in unauthorized occupation and to compute penal charges/rent payable by such unauthorized occupants.

The bench comprising Chief Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Alok Kumar Verma gave these directions while dealing with a plea claiming that several persons are in illegal occupation of the government residences under Pooled Housing Scheme at New Tehri.

The petitioner sought a direction to evict the illegal occupants, and also to recover rent from them as per the Rules.

According to the petitioner, the Respondents-State is not taking any effective steps to either get the unauthorized occupants evicted, or recover occupational charges/ penal rent from the illegal occupants.

Advocate Mahavir Kohli appeared for the petitioner whereas Advocate S.S. Chaudhary appeared for the Respondents.

The Court observed that government accommodation is meant to be occupied by government servants who are entitle to the same under the Rules.

The Court further noted that “It is not uncommon to see government accommodation not being vacated by the government servants once they retire, or are transferred, and they continue to hold the accommodation even after their entitlement thereto has come to an end; without obtaining any extension, or; without making payment for their continued occupation. In our view, this creates difficulties for others who may become entitle to allotment of such accommodations.”

The Court pointed out that non-availability of government accommodation to those, who are entitled to it, will impact the efficiency and functioning of government servants who are denied such accommodation due to their occupation by unauthorized occupants.

Thus the Court disposed of the petition with a direction to initiate proceedings for eviction of unauthorized occupants of government accommodations.

“Steps in these terms should be taken within four weeks under intimation to the petitioner. In case, the respondents do not act, it shall be open to the petitioner to seek revival of this petition.”, the Court held.

Cause Title- Sunil Prasad Bhatt v. State of Uttarakhand & others

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