Lucknow, Sep 21 (IANS): The Lucknow bench of Allahabad High Court has directed the state government and Lucknow Municipal Corporation officials to remove the encroachment from the heritage sites and submit a report on action taken within two weeks.
The order was passed on a PIL filed in 2013 by Lucknow-based lawyer Mohammed Haider Rizvi.
“Let the report be submitted within a period of two weeks from today. In case meetings of the committee constituted for the purpose have not been convened so far, needful be done in this regard,” read the court order.
The direction comes two months after the administration revived a decade-old committee, based on the July order of the court in the same matter, to find pragmatic solutions to encroachment in and around protected monuments in the city.
One of the major bones of contention among various stakeholders including district administration, Hussainabadand Allied Trusts (HAT), and Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), was determining who exactly can be counted as an encroacher.
While ASI maintains that there are nearly 200 encroachments in 25 of the 60 centrally protected monuments in Lucknow, HAT has a different view.
Based on the directions of the divisional commissioner Roshan Jacob, a consensus was finally struck earlier this month.
The committee constituted to clear encroachment zeroed down over 50 encroachments in six sites including Chhota Imambara, Qazmain, Rumi Gate, Bada Imambara, Picture Gallery, and Shahnajaf Imambara.
The consensus is yet to translate into tangible results on the ground. Meanwhile, heritage activists have lauded the order.