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Posted at: Feb 14, 2018, 1:56 AM; last updated: Feb 14, 2018, 1:56 AM (IST)

MC liable to keep P’kula stray cattle-free: HC

Areas not handed over to the corporation to be looked after by Haryana Urban Development Authority
MC liable to keep P’kula stray cattle-free: HC
Workers of the Municipal Corporation load a stray cattle on a truck near Hallo Majra Chowk in Chandigarh on Tuesday. TRIBUNE PHOTO: RAVI KUMAR

Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 13

Putting an end to the six-year-old controversy over the liability to maintain a congenial living environment in urban parts of Panchkula, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has ruled that areas handed over by the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) to the Municipal Corporation by executing an agreement would be the civic body’s responsibility. Areas not handed over would be looked after by HUDA.

The ruling by Justice Rakesh Kumar Jain came on a petition filed by HUDA against the Chairman, Permanent Lok Adalat (Public Utility Services).

Justice Jain asserted that the corporation would provide a healthy living environment free from the cattle menace in areas handed over by HUDA to it after development by way of an agreement.

“Both HUDA and the MC shall perform their respective duties in terms of the Haryana Urban Development Authority Act, 1977, and the Haryana Municipal Corporation Act, 1994,” Justice Jain concluded.

HUDA had challenged the order passed by the Panchkula Permanent Lok Adalat way back in December 2011. Appearing for the petitioner, advocate Padamkant Dwivedi told the Bench that both HUDA and the Panchkula MC were directed to take steps necessary to prevent the cattle menace in Panchkula’s urban area.

The Bench was also told that the controversy had its genesis in an application filed under the provisions of the Legal Services Authorities Act before the Permanent Lok Adalat.

The complainant had raised a grievance against unhygienic conditions caused by excreta of stray animals, cows and dogs included, in areas under the control of HUDA and the MC.

HUDA’s stand before the lok adalat was that after developing sectors in the urban area of Panchkula, the areas were handed over to the MC for future maintenance by way of an agreement. As such, the liability to keep the area under its control free from the cattle menace was that of the MC.

The Bench was also told that the lok adalat took note of the existence of a contract between the parties, but put the liability both on HUDA and the MC for maintaining a congenial living environment in the urban area of Panchkula, while disposing of the petition.

Dwivedi argued that HUDA was not liable to maintain the sectors and areas handed over for maintenance to the MC by executing an agreement. Counsel for the MC, during the course of the hearing, admitted its liability and obligations to keep the area free from the stray cattle menace and unhygienic conditions created by them. At the same time, it submitted that the area not given to the MC by HUDA by way of an agreement was to be maintained by HUDA itself.

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