Huda on demolition spree to clear hurdles for Dwarka e-way

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Gurgaon: At least eight houses have been razed to the ground over the past two days while demolition of another 12-14 structures is going on in New Palam Vihar with Huda getting into action to remove obstacles from the way of long-delayed Dwarka Expressway. Officials said Huda was planning to bulldoze a total of 70 structures, which are free from litigations, over the next few days.

Sources said Huda launched the drive following an intimation from the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), which recently wrote to the Haryana chief secretary expressing its inability to start work on the e-way for the want of land. In this regard, NHAI had floated bids for three out of the total four packages of this 29-km access-controlled highway connecting Delhi with Gurgaon. NHAI has handed over one package to construction major L&T but it is yet to award work for two other packages even after finalising the lowest bidders due to unavailability of land. Moreover, the authority cannot give the appointed date to L&T since the required land parcels are not available yet.

A total of 140 structures are coming in the way of the e-way. Of which owners of 70 houses with registry have been allotted alternative plots in Sector 110A and given compensation for their structures. Owners of the remaining 70 houses, with general power of attorney (GPA) and special power of attorney (SPA), have not been allotted any alternative plot yet due to a stay from the Punjab and Haryana high court.

“So far, we have removed nine structures — eight on Tuesday and one on February 14. Demolition of another 12-14 houses is in progress,” said sub-divisional engineer (enforcement), Huda, HS Jakhad. Jakhad said they were going slow with the demolition drive to allow people time to take out their belongings. “All those houses, against which alternative plots have already been allotted, will be removed in the next few days,” he added.

On February 15, Huda had demolished around 40 boundary walls constructed around vacant plots in New Palam Vihar. Work on the 29-km-long Dwarka Expressway, of which 18.9 km is in Haryana, is running more than a decade behind schedule because of a series of legal cases. It was originally conceived by the Haryana government. NHAI took over the project only in 2017 and officially granted the expressway national highway status.

Sources said the road was almost complete in Gurgaon, except at Khedki Daula and New Palam Vihar wherein relocation of houses, coming in the alignment of the road, has delayed the project. Huda on Tuesday issued notices to people whose houses are coming in the way of widening of Badshapur drain, in Khandsa. The owners have been given 24 hours to vacate their houses, after which the authorities will demolish the houses.