Sagar: The issue of filling in a pond was also demonstrated in the village of Sagar, where it had financial implications for the owner of the pond. Later, he organized six others into farming the pond, which was a private property, and the Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Jyoti Patel imposed a fine of Rs 25000 on each of them. Furthermore, an order was issued to revive the pond, at the pre-tampered form was given out. The pond that was established in the private sections of the village was relied on by the villagers to get their water supply for the day. The locals petitioned when the pond was reclaimed for filing a charge against its owner, Mahendra Tiwari, and six others.

This case has been before the Takhatpur Revenue Court for two years now. To address the issue, which was deemed a serious one, Bilaspur Collector Avneesh Kumar Sharan directed the authorities’ SDM of Takhatpur to conduct an investigation. After getting the directives from the Collector, the SDM constituted a team of the following four members: the State president of the Zilla Parishad, Deputy Tehsildar, and two other members of the Zilla Parishad.

The research found that the present owners, especially six people, proved that, indeed, the end had filled the pond. As such, it was held by the SDM who had powers under the Land Revenue Code Section 242 and 253, that each of the six individuals be imposed a fine of Rs 25,000 and that the land be cleared to form ponds as it was originally.

The SDM has insisted that the said fine has to be paid within fifteen days from the date. If this order and the fine are not complied with, or if these are not paid within the stated time, legal proceedings will be instituted against the persons. As per revenue rules and regulations, any land which is borne as “Wajib-ul-Arz” which means any piece of land that is in common use cannot be changed in its form without the permission of the Sub-Divisional Magistrate. This includes water bodies such as ponds and wells; pathways, built-up areas that are meant to be permanent, say bicycle tracks, and other lands for public use.

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