Sep 10, 2023

Bulldozers to roar again in UP

Lucknow: Bulldozers will roll and rumble once again in Uttar Pradesh but this time the "action" will be against encroachments on government lands, parks and ponds in areas under the jurisdiction of urban local bodies.

According to a state government spokesman, necessary instructions have been given to the authorities concerned to identify illegal constructions and encroachments.

Information regarding the encroachments must be updated on the ‘Anti Land Mafia’ (IGRS) web portal with the help of the revenue department, the instructions said.

A government order issued to this effect made it clear that it will be the responsibility of every civic body to provide the information to the director, Directorate of Local Bodies.

"All encroachments on government lands will be removed," a senior government official said when asked if bulldozers would be used.

So far, bulldozers were largely used in the state to raze properties of criminals.

The campaign against land mafia has been underway since 2017, when the BJP government under Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath was formed for the first time.

The Revenue Department, which has been undertaking the anti-land mafia campaign since 2017, has constituted a four-level task force to review the drive at the state, divisional, district and tehsil levels.

Chief Secretary Durga Shankar Mishra is chairman of the state level ‘Anti Land Mafia Task Force’, while principal secretaries of urban development and other departments are its ‘state-level’ members.

In a recent review meeting of the task force, it was found that information on the portal about illegal encroachments on public lands in cities and towns was negligible. This was the reason, perhaps, why fresh instructions were issued in this regard.

Some BJP leaders feel that the government's decision to remove all illegal encroachments, in spite of the upcoming civic polls, only showcases its resolve to act against all those who violate the law.

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