Justice Challa Kodanda Ram of the Hyderabad High Court made it clear that those who refuse to vacate the premises after their leases are up are ‘unauthorised occupants’. He stated that GVMC is well within its rights to serve them eviction notices, evicting traders who have been selling their wares by the beach.
The judge dismissed scores of petitions put in by traders, urging the court to stop these evictions. It is stated in the judge’s order that all traders who have set up shop by the beach in 1991 have secured the lease from GVMC. The last renewal of these leases were done in 2008 with the lease term ending in 2011.
But when these traders refused to hand over the premises, GVMC slapped them with eviction notices under the Public Premises Act, which orders eviction of unauthorised occupants. GVMC has been seeking that particular area under the beach beautification project and the traders had refused to move. The GVMC claimed the Act they used as a Central Act.
The traders claimed that GVMC cannot be an authority under this Central Act and the eviction notices slapped upon them are unlawful. The district Judge had previously brushed aside these claims and directed the traders to hand over their premises back to the GVMC. The traders had challenged these orders in the High Court, but to no avail.
Justice Kodanda Ram stated that the eviction comes from the AP Public Premises Act and just because the GVMC estate officer wrongly claimed it as a Central Act instead of a State Act, the ongoing eviction process cannot be invalidated. Provisions of both the Acts are similar. Upon dismissal of the plea, the traders requested the court to grant them three months to vacate the premises. But the Judge granted them only one month time to do so.