Dispute over acquisition of Sikh colony land in Meghalaya


Families living in Shillong’s Punjabi Lane for two hundred years are being evicted from there. This move of the state government is being opposed from Meghalaya to Punjab. The Meghalaya government has acquired Punjabi Lane area in the capital Shillong. The residents living there will be shifted to another place. But now the residents of the area have decided to challenge this decision of the government in the court. The communal violence in the area made headlines three years ago. Then the Government of Meghalaya and Punjab had come together and the delegation of Punjab Government also visited Meghalaya. The Punjab government has also protested against this decision of the Meghalaya government. He alleges that this decision has been taken only under the pressure of the land mafia. What is the dispute? A committee was set up in June 2018 to suggest measures for a permanent solution to the decades-old land dispute following violent clashes between the local Khasi and Sikh communities in May 2018.

Following his report, the Chief Minister Conrad Sangma’s cabinet on October 7 approved a proposal to shift Sikhs from Sikh Lane in Them Iw Mawlong area of ​​Shillong. In pictures: Kartarpur Corridor A month after the report of the High Powered Committee constituted by Chief Minister Konrad Sangma for a permanent solution to the problem of this colony, the government has taken possession of it. The recommendations of the committee were approved by the government only last month. The government claims that this disputed land is related to the Department of Urban Affairs. On the other hand, the Sikhs say that this land was gifted to them in 1850 by Hima Mailim, one of the chiefs of the Khasi Hills. Today Maylim is one of the 54 traditional administrative regions under the Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council and Punjabi Lane is a part of it. The Meghalaya government has acquired the land by paying two crore rupees to the local head for about twelve and a half thousand square meters of land. On the other hand, the Harijan Panchayat Samiti argues that the land was gifted to them by the local head about two hundred years ago and the government has no right to snatch it from the 300 families living here. The leader of the colony, Gurjit Singh, questions, “The matter of our colony is pending in the Meghalaya High Court and the Supreme Court. How can the government take over it?” Meghalaya Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tensang, who was also the chairman of the High Powered Committee, says, “We are not against the residents of the colony.


They are not being driven away. We want to rehabilitate them at a suitable place.” He says that the condition of Harijan Colony is worse than that of slum and it is not fit for human habitation. Tensang says that the government will defend the acquisition if the residents of the colony challenge the government’s decision in court. There is a lot of opposition to this decision of the government. Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa on Sunday said that he would take up the issue of Meghalaya government’s move to expel Sikhs living in Shillong with the Union Home Minister. A Punjab government delegation led by Randhawa also visited the Shri Guru Nanak Darbar in Shillong after the violence three years ago. Photos: Worship of nature Gurdwara head Gurjit Singh told the delegation that the people of the colony were being forcibly removed from there. The National Commission for Scheduled Castes has sent a notice to the Chief Secretary and other senior officials of Meghalaya asking them to submit a report on the matter at the earliest. A Delhi-based Sikh organization has also accused the Meghalaya government of acting beyond its jurisdiction on the issue of transfer of non-government employees from Punjabi Lane area.

The organization has sought the intervention of Governor Satya Pal Malik. A delegation of Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee met Governor Malik at Raj Bhavan and submitted a memorandum to him. Sikh leader Gurjit Singh says, “There is a lot of tension among the people of the community due to the government’s plan. We have been living here for 200 years. The government has tried to expel us from here many times. We have the ownership rights of this land. documents.” Political observers say that even if the government has captured the land by making a deal, this matter will not be resolved so easily. The people of the colony are not ready to accept the government’s decision at any cost..


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