J&K Authorities Evict 8 Sikh families in Qila Darhal, Residents Protest

Reported by

Rabiya Bashir

Legal Data by

Bhavesh Seth, Mukta Joshi

Edited by

Moushumi Sharma

Updated by

Published on

August 30, 2021

August 30, 2021

Updated on

August 30, 2021

Location of Conflict

Qila Darhal in Nowshera sector of Rajouri

Rajouri

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Other Kind of Land Use

(

)

People Affected by Conflict

Households Affected by Conflict

8

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

2

ha

Starting Year

2020

State

Jammu and Kashmir

Sector

Land Use

On January 22, 2020, the Sikh residents of Qila Darhal tehsil in Nowshera sub-district in Rajouri held a protest against an anti-encroachment drive by the government authorities. The Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC) attempted to demolish the houses of eight Sikh families on two hectares of land; however, the drive was halted as the residents allegedly started pelting stones at the officials. They also damaged a police van and two JCB machines.

The residents claim to be living in the area since 1947. “Many among us and our ancestors fought against Pakistani soldiers and tribesmen in 1947-48 and had forced the invaders out of the Qila Darhal Fort and other areas,” Balbir Singh, one of the residents, told the media.

The protesting families allege that after the creation of Qila Darhal as a tehsil, the revenue officials, in nexus with the forest department, changed their land records and have been making attempts at evicting at least eight Sikh families on the pretext of encroachment.

“The divisional forest officer, tehsildar, naib tehsildar, forest range officer and others, instead of taking action against the actual encroachers, have been harassing the Sikh families,” Zorawar Singh, another resident, told the media.

Nowshera Divisional Forest Officer Suresh Manda did not respond to calls from LCW despite repeated attempts.

Eviction drives have been taking place across Jammu and Kashmir after the Roshni Act, under which the ownership of state land was vested with occupants under certain conditions, was scrapped by the Jammu and Kashmir high court in 2020.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Demand to retain/protect access to common land/resources

Complaint against procedural violations

Demand for legal recognition of land rights

Other Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Region Classification

Rural

Type of Land

Common

Type of Common Land

Forest

Total investment involved (in Crores):

Type of investment:

Year of Estimation

Page Number In Investment Document:

Has the Conflict Ended?

No

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Legislations/Policies Involved

Jammu and Kashmir State Lands (Vesting of Ownership to the Occupants) Act, 2001
Section 8: [Conditions for vesting of rights over land from the state to the occupants]; Section 9: [Estate Officer shall have the power to evict and the assistant commissioner has to give five days' notice for eviction]
Jammu and Kashmir State Lands (Vesting of Ownership to the Occupants) Rules, 2007
Rule 8(1): [Procedure for eviction stipulates that the occupant be given notice to surrender possession of the land within one month]
Jammu and Kashmir Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Act, 1988
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    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

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    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

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:

Forced evictions/dispossession of land

Land record discrepancies

Lack of legal protection over land rights

Legal Status:

Out of Court

Status of Case In Court

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

Case Number

Main Reasoning/Decision of court

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

No items found.

Whether criminal law was used against protestors:

Reported Details of the Violation:

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Nature of Protest

Protests/marches

Property damage/arson

Stone pelting

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Jammu Municipal Corporation, Forest department, Revenue department

PSUs Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Government Authorities for Comments?

Nowshera Divisional Forest Officer Suresh Manda did not respond to calls from LCW despite repeated attempts.

Name, Designation and Comment of the Government Authorities Approached

Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Communities/Local Organisations in the Conflict:

Sikh families living in Qila Darhal

Resources Related to Conflict

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

Image Credit:  

Image Credit:  

Documented By

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Reviewed By

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Updated By

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Edited By

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