A Jammu and Kashmir special tribunal has stayed the demolition order issued to Mamta Singh, wife of former deputy chief minister Nirmal Singh, by the Jammu Development Authority. The order, issued on July 28, had directed Singh to demolish the “unauthorised construction of the palatial bungalow situated at Ban village in Nagrota of Jammu within five days”.
After Mamta Singh’s appeal, the tribunal had directed the JDA to maintain the status quo. The matter came to fore on Friday. The JDA had issued the order under the Control of Building Operations Act, 1988.
The counsel for Mamta Singh contended that she acquired the land by virtue of a sale deed on May 20, 2014. It was contended that the land was outside the jurisdiction of any development authority and the structure of the house was completed in the beginning of 2017.
It was pointed out that during the period of construction and thereafter, there was no complaint by any development authority and as it had been constructed before Jammu Master Plan, 2032 came into force.
JDA’s counsel argued that appellant constructed the building without seeking permission from JDA, in contravention of building bye-laws and the Jammu Master Plan, 2032.
It was submitted that area in question was a green zone and the violation was “major” in nature.
The tribunal directed Singh to produce the record in support of her claim and geo-tagged photographs of construction in question by October 17.
The matter had come to fore in response to an RTI reply sought by advocate Muzzaffar Ali Shah. The JDA admitted had admitted that then Khilafwarzi officer had reported the alleged illegal construction but no action was not taken.