SC asks Haji Ali Dargah Trust to remove encroachments within four weeks

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 10 May 2017 08:51:23


NEW DELHI,

The apex court said if the encroachers failed to comply with the order to remove the encroachments by June 6, then the Joint Task Force will begin the work of removing encroachments from June 10 and complete the task by June 30

THE Supreme Court on Tuesday asked Mumbai’s Haji Ali Dargah Trust to remove encroachments in a 500 square metre area in the historic shrine within four weeks, while lauding its efforts in this regard so far.


The apex court said if the encroachers failed to comply with the order to remove the encroachments by June 6, then the Joint Task Force (JTF) set up by the Bombay High Court will come into picture and begin the work of removing them from June 10 and complete the task by June 30.
A bench headed by Chief Justice J S Khehar directed that the beautification plan around the shrine, built in 1431 AD, has to be placed on record before the apex court on or before June 30.


It said the beautification plan prepared by the trust can be accepted and if required, the municipal council of Mumbai can make modification.
The council would also be at liberty to substitute it with another plan and in carrying out the above exercise the civic body can take assistance of a well-known urban heritage architect.


The bench said the sentiments of the people of the community should be kept in mind while carrying out the plans and posted the matter for further hearing on July 3.
The Haji Ali Dargah was constructed in 1431 in memory of a wealthy Muslim merchant, Sayyed Peer Haji Ali Shah Bukhari, who gave up all his possessions before making a pilgrimage to Mecca. The bench in its order noted that the instant order was in continuation of the order passed by it on April 13. It took on record the affidavit of compliance filed by the trust till May 8.


“We place on record our appreciation the endeavour of the Trust in complying with our order and the undertaking given by it on April 13,” the bench said.


It also appreciated the team of counsel and members of the Trust who participated in the entire exercise by providing input from time to time. The bench noted that the perusal of the factual position depicted in the affidavit indicates that the encroachment has not been removed so far in small portion of 500 square metre.


Taking note of the fact, the bench said that it would be just and appropriate to direct the JTF constituted by the Bombay High Court to associate itself with others including representative of the Trust to verify factual position which has to be done within one week from Tuesday.