Demolition Drive in Haryana's Khori Gaon Leave over 1 Lakh People Homeless

Reported by

Land Conflict Watch

Last updated on

August 19, 2021

Location of Conflict

Khori Gaon

Faridabad

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Other Kind of Land Use

Demolition drive

(

)

People Affected by Conflict

100000

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

49

ha

Starting Year

2010

State

Haryana

Sector

Land Use

In June 2021, the Supreme Court directed the Haryana government and the Municipal Corporation of Faridabad to remove all encroachments in Khori Gaon in the Aravalli forest area. Following the court order, in the second week of July, the authorities began demolishing over 10,000 homes under police protection despite the contention of at least one lakh people seeking rehabilitation from the state government. On July 16, human rights experts of the United Nations called upon the Indian government to stop the forced evictions. But the demolitions continued. A media report quoted Yashpal Yadav, the deputy commissioner of Faridabad, as saying, We have started fullscale demolition, and we are implementing the Supreme Court order in letter and spirit. All structures will be demolished as per the orders and not just those that have been vacated. The drive is being conducted peacefully, and we have not faced any challenge so far, except people not cooperating. Earlier in September 2020, about 1,700 houses in Khori Gaon were demolished as directed by the Supreme Court in a March 2020 order. During the demolition drive, the police had reportedly lathicharged and arrested the residents who were protesting against the forced evictions. Since 2021, despite the raging COVID19 pandemic, over months, the authorities discontinued drinking water and electricity supply to the village.  The main demand of the affected families has been for the state government to provide them rehabilitation. But the authorities have argued that all the encroachments were illegal.  Reportedly, the early residents of Khori village were migrant workers who had settled there between 1970 and 1990. The conflict began in 2010, when the Municipal Corporation of Faridabad attempted to carry out forced evictions in the village, claiming that the land is regulated by the Punjab Land Preservation Act. The residents of Khori Gaon then approached courts seeking a stay against forced evictions without rehabilitation, and a long legal battle followed. In 2016, the High Court of Punjab and Haryana reportedly gave two detailed judgments on rehabilitating the residents as per the policy of the Haryana Urban Development Authority dated February 10, 2010. In July 2021, the Faridabad district administration announced a Policy for Rehabilitation of Khori Jhuggi Dwellers. But activists and the affected people argue that the policy will only provide relief to some residents as thousands of families do not possess the necessary documents for claiming benefits under the policy.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Complaint against procedural violations, Demand for legal recognition of land rights, Demand for rehabilitation

Region Classification

Urban

Type of Land

Common

Type of Common Land

Forest

Total investment involved (in Crores):

Type of investment:

Year of Estimation

Has the Conflict Ended?

No

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Central/State Government Policy, Forest and Scheduled Area Governance Laws, Case Laws, Other

Legislations/Policies Involved

Whether claims/objections were made as per procedure in the relevant statute

What was the claim(s)/objection(s) raised by the community? What was the decision of the concerned government department?

Legal Processes and Loopholes Enabling the Conflict:

Lack of legal protection over land rights, Land-record discrepancies , Forced evictions, Non-rehabilitation of displaced people

Legal Status:

In Court

Status of Case In Court

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

Supreme Court, High Court of Punjab and Haryana

Case Number

SC - WP (C) 592 of 2021

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

Arrest/detention/imprisonment, Displacement, Lathi charge/tear gas/pellets, Other harassment

Whether criminal law was used against protestors

Official name of the criminal law. Did the case reach trial?

Reported Details of the Violation:

During a demolition drive in September 2020, the police had reportedly lathi-charged and arrested residents who were protesting against the forced evictions. Since 2021, despite the raging COVID-19 pandemic, over months, the authorities discontinued drinking water and electricity connections to the village.

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Khori Gaon

Nature of Protest

Advocacy (for inclusion in courts), Campaigns (Grassroots organisations/press releases/media), Hunger strikes, Involvement of national and international NGOs, Protests/marches, Public campaign

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Faridabad District Authority, Forest Department of Haryana, Government of NCT of Delhi

PSUs Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Government Authorities for Comments?

Name, Designation and Comment of the Government Authorities Approached

Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Name, Designation and Comment of Corporate Authorities Approached

Other Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
  • Documents Related to the Conflict:
  • Links Related to the Conflict:
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Updated By

Edited By

Land Conflict Watch
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