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Lawyer petitions DC for eviction of Harijan Colony residents

Shillong, Oct 19: Advocate Erwin K Syiem Sutnga has moved a petition seeking the eviction of over 300 Harijan Colony families from Them Iew Mawlong as per the Meghalaya Transfer of Land Transfer (Regulation) Act, 1971.

The petition was submitted to the East Khasi Hills deputy commissioner Isawanda Laloo on Tuesday.

Erwin said in the petition that the Harijan Panchayat Committee (HPC) is representing the non-tribal occupiers of the tribal land known as Them Iew Mawlong which had been converted into a Harijan Colony without the sanction of law.

“This action of the HPC is against the provisions of The Meghalaya Transfer of Land (Regulation) Act, 1971,” he said.

He said the petition under section 8 of The Meghalaya Transfer of Land (Regulation) Act, 1971  provides for issuing up notice, hearing of the respondents and also other required procedure of law in order to arrive at a judicious finding based on the principles of justice and the right to be heard.

He recalled that the Supreme Court in the case related to Union of India and another versus Omkar Nath Deb had said while determining the rights of retired Kashmiri pandits to stay in government quarters that “compassion cannot be extended in perpetuity”.

He said as per supreme court directive, policy providing accommodation to retired government employees who were Kashmiri migrants, is violative of Article 14.

“Therefore in this case as well the quantum of compassion has to be weighed against the interest of the minority Khasi-Jaintia tribe,” Erwin said.

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