Kathputli Demolition: Irreparable Loss to Students, Says HC  
File photo of the Delhi High Court.
File photo of the Delhi High Court. (Photo: PTI)

Kathputli Demolition: Irreparable Loss to Students, Says HC  

The Delhi High Court on Thursday, 18 January, observed that an irreparable loss has been caused to the students of classes 10 and 12 who, along with their families, were displaced from Delhi's Kathputli Colony and moved to transit camps following a demolition drive.

A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar told the authorities that if a demolition drive is done like this at a crucial time when students' exams are approaching in the future, the court would take stringent action.

“This is an irreparable loss to the students. There are several students in classes 10 and 12 who have been displaced,” the bench said, adding that it cannot be denied that these children have to be relocated.

The Delhi government’s standing counsel Satyakam assured the bench that these problems would be immediately looked into and said that it would provide transport to students to reach their schools.

The bench directed the AAP government and its transport department to ensure availability of facilities, including transportation to these children and asked it to take immediate steps on the matter.

The government's counsel said it would start bus facility to address the concern raised by court observers Monika Arora and Rakesh Kumar for provision of an adequate and efficacious public transportation facility to the persons who have been moved to the flats in Narela to commute to Shadipur Depot, so that they reach their work place on time.

Also Read: I Was Beaten & Locked up for Covering Kathputli Colony Demolition

The counsel further said the persons, who have been moved from Shadipur area, can access the public distribution system by changing their address through online facility.

The bench also directed the Delhi Development Authority to allot alternative flats to the displaced persons in Kathputli Colony only and inform them about it through specific letters.

It directed an inspection of the transit camps by the court observers and listed the matter for 28 February.

The court was hearing a PIL filed by some residents of the colony challenging the demolition and the manner in which it was carried out in October-November last year.

Also Read: Humans of Kathputli Colony Demolition: “Nobody Came to Our Rescue”

It had earlier said that the court would ensure that the right to life of persons displaced from Kathputli Colony in west Delhi were not violated while refraining from taking action on the allegation that developers were hand-in-gloves with the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) during the demolition drive.

Spread over an area of around 14 acres, the Kathputli Colony was home to a large number of puppeteers, magicians, singers and musicians.

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