July 7, 2022
Dozens of Dalit families settled in Tarla Aamwala near Dehradun are about to be evicted & left totally homeless. They have been protesting, and allege a lack of due process, corruption and deceit. What is this all about, and why should you pay attention? #Thread
Residents of the affected settlement in Tarla Aamwala claim to have been living there for the past 15 years. It is situated right next to a PM Awas Yojana apartment complex. The complex is managed by a Residents' Welfare Association, the president of which is one Manorama Kala.
Residents allege that Ms. Kala took lakhs of rupees from them, based on an oral agreement. While they were promised that they would be allotted pattas (formal land titles), the allotment supposedly never took place. (Video credits:
When they were unable to pay the full amount, they claim they began to get harassed. In a written complaint to the mayor, residents have alleged casteist abuse, abetment of suicide and wrongful restraint on the part of those who took money from them in exchange for their plots.
The Tarla Aamwala residents claim that the demolitions are an extension of this harassment, and that they were not even given notice before their homes began to get demolished by the municipal authorities. Are such demolitions legal? What does the law say?
Under the Uttar Pradesh Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Act, 1972 - applicable to municipal corporation land in Uttarakhand as well - no person can be evicted, even for unauthorised occupation of corporation land, without first giving them prior notice.
After prior notice is given to the supposedly unauthorised occupant, they have the opportunity to be heard and show cause why they shouldn't be evicted. As per the Supreme Court's directions too, prior notice is an essential part of the due process to be followed pre-eviction.
Back in 1985, the Supreme Court established that evictions & demolitions of homes can deprive the right to live with dignity under Article 21 of the Constitution. As recently as 2017, it upheld that affected people must be meaningfully consulted & rehabilitated before eviction.
No such rehabilitation is being done for the residents of Tarla Aamwala, who are being evicted in the monsoon season. Many claim they will have nowhere to go. This goes against the UN Housing Rapporteur’s guidelines too, which say that evictions must not leave evictees homeless.
The second round of evictions has been scheduled for tomorrow: 9th July 2022. We will keep close watch on how they unfold. Read about this conflict and others on our database here: https://www.landconflictwatch.org/all-conflicts