Yamuna in Vrindavan is choking from illegal encroachments

The land scattered on both sides of the river Yamuna in Vrindavan, is being encroached rapidly by the land mafia to build illegal colonies on them. The government agencies responsible to protect these lands have completely failed to prevent the encroachments.

Vrindavan is expanding its area; the new colonies have come up in the outskirts of the old Vrindavan town. Once the land used for agriculture, forestry, pasture and ashram, are being used to develop the colonies. It is an alarming situation particularly on the banks of River Yamuna, where concrete structures are coming up very fast. Literally, Yamuna is choking due to the apathy on the part of those who are entrusted to prevent any sort of construction on the bank of the rivers.  The encroachments have affected the uninterrupted flow of River Yamuna. Misadventures, on government’s part has also affected the Yamuna very badly. The ill conceived developmental plan of the government has also contributed to the destruction of Yamuna’s pristine form.

The floodplains have been encroached with concrete and permanent structures that are bound to cause ecological havoc in the form of floods.  Besides it upsets the natural hydrological havoc in the form of floods situated close to the river.

Ill conceived project of the Riverfront Development in Vrindavan

It is apparent that the mafias have encroached the floodplains, in connivance with the government agencies responsible to protect them. Several illegal colonies and commercial centers have come up on the flood plains of Yamuna. The authorities have completely failed in restraining them. The colonies and commercial set ups are set to discharge a huge amount of garbage, sewage and toxic waste into the already highly polluted rivers.

Even after the interventions of the High court and NGT, the land sharks are still actively engage in selling off the floodplain areas of River Yamuna. The registration and mutation of plots in flood plain is being actively carried out by the registry department. The land mafia and realtors sell plots to build the houses in absolute violation of the land use norms, without any environmental clearances from the governments at the Center or State.

In a recent incident, Ramesh Pujari, an activist from Vrindavan, has made a complaint to the District Magistrate about the illegal selling of 31 bigha government land near the Panigaon Chouraha. The District Magistrate has ordered a joint inspection of the Municipal Corporation and the survey department to check the land record by measuring the said government land, being illegally sold by the land sharks.

Interestingly, in another case at Nagla Sankraya village near Vrindavan, the survey of the land record couldn’t be completed in 30 years. The survey was initiated in 1991.

About a dozen illegal colonies are being built in Vrindavan without following any norms. None of the colonies have taken the approval of the Mathura Vrindavan Development Authority to carry on the construction work by getting the map of the respective colonies approved.

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