Last year, the Honorable High Court gave a clear order to reinstate the tenant’s rights in the case of old RK Studio/RK Enterprises fire incident from 2006 in the Main Bazaar, Pahalgam. The CEO and the SHO followed the court directions and gave over the possession to Sh. Ravinder Kumar, an old-time businessman who has lived in Pahalgam for the last 60 years.
A new year, a new story. With new officers at the helm in 2019, and under what seems like undue influence, the local Pahalgam administration is bent on violating the order and is pressurizing Mr. Ravinder at the behest the building owner Shamima Shera and her brother Bilal Ahmed Shera who also happen to be total outsiders. The duo has the CEO PDA, and SHO Pahalgam exert undue pressure to reverse implement the judgment.
After a suspicious fire had torn down the building in 2006, the owner had requested permission for the reconstruction of the gutted building. One of the conditions laid out was that the grant of the permission would have no impact on the landlord-tenant relationship. However, the shop was not handed over to the tenant, and the tenant approached the Honorable High Court for justice. After the landlord indulged in stalling tactics for four years, last year the court came down heavily on all the concerned authorities and as a result, in the presence of a number of authorities, the shop was handed over to Sh. Ravinder Kumar. It included the CEO, the Tehsildar, the SHO.
In the last couple of days, the situation started changing back again. The landlord has forcibly occupied a portion of the shop and has laid claim to a significant portion of the shop, all with open support from the same authorities that only months back had helped implement the high court order.
New officers in authority have changed their stand over a short period of time with no logic, no further court directive, but what can be nothing but undue influence in favor of one of the party. It is a travesty of hard-earned justice. Do the land’s courts have no other business but to hear the same cases again and again, and issue the same orders again and again, just because new officers simply choose to do it differently?
There is a lot going on in Pahalgam; the suspicious behavior of authorities that plays with the thin line between tenant/landlord relationships is just one of them. Especially with situations created by the kind of fires that may themselves have been suspicious in nature.
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