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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Sunday, 03 March 2024 8.54 AM IST

Munnar: High court to follow further order to demolish buildings

munnar

KOCHI: In its efforts to clear encroachments in Munnar, the High Court has issued a directive that bans the demolition of commercial or residential buildings until further orders are given. However, the court's decision emphasizes the protection of cardamom tea plantations and other agricultural lands. The division bench, comprised of Justice Muhammad Mushtaq and Justice Shobha Annamma Eepan, suggests that such lands could be transferred to Kudumbashree or auctioned with conditions specifying the management and maintenance of the land. The district administration is not restricted from acquiring land adjacent to the encroached residential buildings, and actions related to the residents' stay will be by the government's decisions. The petition is scheduled for another hearing on the 7th.

Regarding the eviction of commercial buildings, occupants may be allowed to remain pending the final decision of the Government or the Court, provided they pay a license fee determined by the District Administration or the Government. The court has also urged the government to develop a fixed system for issuing titles and certificates in this context. According to the government, 239.42 acres of encroached land, including commercial buildings, have already been acquired. These decisions follow petitions filed by the Thrissur-based organization "One Earth One Life" aimed at preventing encroachment in Munnar.

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