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Acting on NGT orders, Gurugram authorities demolish 'illegal' farmhouses in Raisina Aravallis

Acting on NGT orders, Gurugram authorities demolish illegal farmhouses in Raisina Aravallis
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Gurugram: Instructed by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) in August to act against farmhouses that had come up at forest areas of Aravallis specifically around Raisina forests in Sohna, Gurugram public agencies have now begun to demolish certain farmhouses.

According to officials, around 18 farmhouses have been demolished as of now. It is however expected to be an onerous task for officials as it is estimated that there are over 430 such farmhouses that have come up only in the Raisina Aravallis. Moreover, it took over seven months for officials to conduct a survey in the Raisina forest and identify farmhouses that were built illegally in forest areas.

Large-scale exploitation of the forest areas of Aravallis had led to a lot of citizens and environmentalists in Gurugram filing petitions not only in the NGT but even in the Supreme Court. Taking cognisance of one of these petitions, the NGT in August last year ordered Gurugram public agencies to identify these farmhouses that had come up in Aravallis and demolish such illegal structures.

"As per orders of the court we have begun demolishing those farmhouses that had come up in forest areas of Aravallis. There was a survey that was conducted following which the notices were sent to the owners following which process of demolition began from our side," an official from the South Haryana Forest Department said.

The process of developing farmhouses in the forest areas of Aravallis has been an ongoing process since 1992. Besides Raisina, large numbers of illegal farmhouses and illegal structures have also come up in the areas of Gairatpur, Mangar and Bandhwari.

It is estimated that from 1990, more than 700 farmhouses have come up in Aravallis of Gurugram.

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