Cramped and clut­tered

The gov­ern­ment has now de­cided to reg­u­larise some of the blocks in Abul Fazal En­clave I which may give respite to res­i­dents

HT Estates - - Front Page - Jee­van Prakash Sharma

Si­t­u­ated on the Ya­muna river bank in south Delhi, Abul Fazal En­clave I and II are among those 1600-odd unau­tho­rised colonies, which not only un­der­line the fla­grant vi­o­la­tion of land laws but also high­light Delhi gov­ern­ment’s fail­ure to ad­dress the is­sue of ur­ban plan­ning. The re­cent de­mo­li­tion drive in a nearby area by Delhi’s rev­enue depart­ment — which has left hun­dreds of peo­ple home­less — is a case in point.

De­spite hav­ing been ac­quired by the Delhi De­vel­op­ment Author­ity in 1991, a huge chunk of land was be­ing sold to in­no­cent buy­ers by the land mafia with the con­nivance of the po­lice and of­fi­cials from the rev­enue depart­ment.

“A new unau­tho­rised colony in the name of Abul Fazal En­clave III was com­ing up. But the Delhi High Court or­dered the Delhi gov­ern- ment to clean up en­croach­ments and ac­quire the land. By then, hun­dreds of peo­ple had al­ready bought land and con­structed houses,” says a res­i­dent, re­quest­ing anonymity.

But those fam­i­lies, who were dis­placed in the de­mo­li­tion drive, claim to be right­ful own­ers of the land and have vowed to fight le­gal bat­tles. “We are meet­ing min­is­ters and se­nior gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials to plead our case. We are the right­ful own­ers of the land and we will fight till we win,” says a res­i­dent.

Prop­erty buy­ers of Abul Fazal En­clave I and II are luck­ier as their unau­tho­rised con­struc­tions never came un­der the au­thor­i­ties’ scan­ner in the last 40 years. The gov­ern­ment has now de­cided to reg­u­larise some of the blocks in Abul Fazal En­clave I.

The Delhi gov­ern­ment has in­cluded 11 blocks (E to N) of Abul Fazal En­clave I in the list of 895 to-be-reg­u­larised colonies. And rest of the ar­eas are un­der con­sid­era- tion for reg­u­lar­i­sa­tion.

Shams Tabrez, a res­i­dent of Abul Fazal En­clave I, says, “Abul Fazal En­clave I and II have many things in com­mon. Both were de­vel­oped on agri­cul­ture land and the ma­jor­ity of res­i­dents are from the Mus­lim com­mu­nity. Even some civic is­sues are com­mon such as wa­ter and elec­tric­ity cri­sis, hap­haz­ard de­vel­op­ment, ab­sence of sewage dis­posal sys­tem etc.”

As far as dif­fer­ences be­tween the two colonies are con­cerned, Abul Fazal En­clave I, which came first, boasts of good res­i­dences and higher real es­tate prices as com­pared to part II.

“The four blocks (A, B, C, D) of Abul Fazal En­clave I are the old­est ones where mainly doc­tors, pro­fes­sors and se­nior gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials re­side. The civic ameni­ties are bet­ter and houses are well-built. Blocks E to N were de­vel­oped later and most of the res­i­dents are mid­dle­class fam­i­lies. Schools and hos­pi­tals make life easy for the res­i­dents,” says Nisar Ah­mad, pres­i­dent, Abul Fazal En­clave Main Block ABCD res­i­dents’ as­so­ci­a­tion.

He adds, “Abul Fazal En­clave II, which can be seen as an ex­ten­sion of I, com­prises mostly lower mid­dle-class peo­ple from dif­fer­ent pro­fes­sions. Plots are small in sizes due to which the area is clut­tered. There is no school or hos­pi­tal here.”

Res­i­dents say that real es­tate prices may es­ca­late in the next few years due to Metro con­nec­tiv­ity and the con­stant flow of peo­ple from other parts of Delhi and neigh­bour­ing states.

Be­sides other civic prob­lems, says a res­i­dent, “one of our ma­jor con­cerns is lack of space for a ceme­tery. There is only one ceme­tery for over 8 lakh peo­ple in the Jamia Na­gar par­lia­men­tary con­stituency. There is a huge patch of land be­tween Abul Fazal En­clave I and II. We are de­mand­ing that the gov­ern­ment al­lot it for a ceme­tery.”

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