Has Section 118 of the Himachal Pradesh Tenancy and Land Reforms Act barring non-agriculturist from purchasing land been tweaked to benefit builders? This question is being posed by bona fide non-agriculturists Himachalis, who are not allowed to purchase land after messages inviting non-Himachalis to purchase flats went viral in Whatsapp groups. “It is strange that we cannot sell land to non-agriculturists but builders who are constructing flats after purchasing land in relaxation of Section 118 are free to sell flats to outsiders”, said a non-agriculturist Himachali, adding that instead of withdrawing permission to HIMUDA to sell flats to outsiders, builders seem to have been provided the privilege.
Contribution to CM’s fund & wrongdoing
One wonders whether contribution to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund can fetch immunity to a wrongdoer. At least villagers in Kasauli were made to believe so when they asked a road contractor not to indulge in shoddy work. The villagers wondered how such a contribution, meant for providing relief to the needy, could grant such a privilege. Given the past precedence, it appears this fund does have such an impact as industries indulging in large-scale violations contribute heavy amount of the relief fund. One is left perplexed and forced to think whether this is the case!
No weekend lockdown perplexing
Despite the number of Covid cases in the state crossing 10,000 within a short span, the state government is reluctant to impose a weekend lockdown as has been done by some neighbouring states. In fact, due to weekend lockdown in these states, people are heading straight to Himachal, fuelling fear among the locals of the Covid situation getting grim. One can see long queues of tourist vehicles heading towards Shimla and the parking areas jampacked. One wonders whether safeguarding the interest of hoteliers is more important than protecting the people of the state.