Amnesty India condemned the proposal of the Union government’s railway authorities to forcibly evict over 4000 families living in Banbhulpura area of Haldwani town in Uttarakhand following the order of the Uttarakhand high court.
As many as 4000 families face eviction in Uttarakhand’s Haldwani area after the high court had ordered the demolition following a Hindu right wing sympathiser approached the court claiming the Muslim dominant locality is an encroachment on a piece of Indian Railway land. Now, the residents of the locality have moved the Supreme Court challenging the high court’s order.
“Instead of prioritizing access to a basic level of housing for everyone, the central government plans to render some of the most socially and economically disadvantaged sections of society homeless during one of the coldest winters in northern India,” the human rights body said.
The railway authorities aim to develop their projects at the cost of the people living in the area without giving them adequate notice or compensation to find an alternative home, Amnesty alleged.
It went on to say: “International human rights standards unequivocally state that regardless of the reasons for the eviction, it should be carried out in strict compliance with the relevant provisions of international human rights law. According to international human rights standards, the authorities must ensure that no one is left homeless because of an eviction, including those without ownership documents. They must offer adequate compensation to all those affected without discrimination.”
The Muslim residents in the area who have been protesting the demolition move, said to Maktoob that the government is encroaching upon Muslim houses, shops and lands in Haldwani.
They also claimed that they have government schools, tanks and registration papers since generations. “How were these made on railway land?” ask the demonstrators.