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"Blackmailing Type Of Litigation": Delhi High Court Dismisses PIL Against Alleged Unauthorized Construction With 50K Cost

Nupur Thapliyal
24 Sep 2021 5:45 AM GMT
Blackmailing Type Of Litigation: Delhi High Court Dismisses PIL Against Alleged Unauthorized Construction With 50K Cost
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The Delhi High Court has rejected with Rs. 50,000 cost, a Public Interest Litigation filed challenging alleged unauthorised construction on properties, without any source of knowledge. The Court dubbed it to be 'a blackmailing type of litigation'.The petitioner claimed to have found out about the alleged illegal construction from persons living in surrounding areas.Unconvinced, the...

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The Delhi High Court has rejected with Rs. 50,000 cost, a Public Interest Litigation filed challenging alleged unauthorised construction on properties, without any source of knowledge. The Court dubbed it to be 'a blackmailing type of litigation'.

The petitioner claimed to have found out about the alleged illegal construction from persons living in surrounding areas.

Unconvinced, the Bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Amit Bansal said that the petition was filed "without any homework" and merely on being informed by "some persons who are moving on road".

"This is not a method in which Public Interest Litigation can be filed by the Petitioner," the Bench said.
"It ought to be kept in mind that whenever any superstructure is to be demolished, even if it is illegal in nature, the Petitioner ought to have joined owners / occupiers of the superstructure as a party Respondent. No construction can be demolished without hearing the owners / occupiers of the superstructure," the Court added.

The petition, filed by Fight for Right Social Welfare Society, challenged some properties of Shastri Nagar area in Delhi alleging that they were unauthorised and illegal constructions and the same were not being demolished by the concerned Respondent authorities.

During the course of physical hearing, the Chief Justice asked the Petitioner's counsel: "What is the size of this Courtroom? Can you look at it and tell us?"

As the counsel conveyed his inability to assess the same, the Court orally remarked,

"You can't tell the size of a room you're standing in but you can look at a building and tell that it is authorized or not?"

 It was then submitted on behalf of the petitioner that it was informed about the illegality of the constructions by persons living in the surroundings of such constructions. 

"When we raised a question to the learned counsel for the Petitioner that whether Petitioner has ever obtained any information about the aforesaid 13 buildings under the Right to Information Act, 2005, the answer is in the negative. Thus, this Petitioner has not tried to get any information about the maps of the construction, etc. from the concerned Respondent authorities or from any competent authority," the Court said.
"it appears that this is not a Public Interest Litigation. This is a blackmailing type of litigation," it added.

Accordingly, the petition was disposed of with a cost of Rs. 50,000 to be deposited by the Petitioner with the Delhi State Legal Services Authority within four weeks.

"The aforesaid amount shall be utilized for the programme 'Access to Justice'," the Bench added.

Case Title: FIGHT FOR RIGHT SOCIAL WELFARE SOCIETY v. THE VICE CHAIRMAN DELHI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY CUM CHAIRPERSON SPECIAL TASK FORCE & ANR

Click Here To Read Order 

Inputs by Akshita Saxena

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