New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Thursday slammed North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) for flouting its order with regard to the allotment of the surface area parking at Parade Ground in Chandni Chowk.
A bench of justices S Ravindra Bhat and S Muralidhar also pulled up NDMC for its "wonderful bureaucratic language" in its affidavit and posted the matter for further consideration on December 17.
"NDMC has flouted the court's order in regard to the allotment of the surface area of the parking. You should safeguard public places," the bench said.
During the hearing, NDMC submitted an affidavit on behalf of its Commissioner which said that it was not aware of the court order.
"The letter granting temporary permission to use the surface of the Parade Ground parking only for Ram Leela this year has been issued under the orders of the Deputy Commissioner North Delhi Municipal Corporation.
"At no point, the file was shown to the deponent. This provisional allotment grants permission to use the ground parking but does not permit the shutting down of the underground parking facility during Ram Leela festival," the affidavit said.
The High Court had directed the NDMC Commissioner to appear before it and submit an affidavit for leasing out surface parking at Parade Ground without seeking permission of the court.
"On seeking explanation from the DC, it was informed that the orders of September 23 and October 7, 2013 were neither in knowledge of the Deputy Commissioners nor were these orders available in the relevant department file.
"The communique of the counsel for NDMC available in the case file did not show or indicate that this court had restrained NDMC from making allotment of the surface parking and that NDMC had been directed to ensure free access of the basement multilevel parking for Ram Leela festival every coming year," the affidavit said.
The court has been monitoring the issue of redevelopment of the walled city through a petition filed by NGO Manushi Sangathan in 2007.
Earlier this year, the government had submitted a proposal to ban motorised vehicles from the main road in Chandni Chowk and start a tram system for the convenience of pedestrians.
The court directed the government to formulate a policy on e-rickshaws, stating that these vehicles would have to be considered while creating a lane system.