New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday ordered a monitoring committee to ensure that 5,000-odd illegal industrial units still operating from residential areas in Delhi are shut within 15 days.
The apex court order came after the committee, headed by the Delhi Chief Secretary, informed a bench of Justice Madan B. Lokur and Justice Deepak Gupta on the matter.
The court lamented that even 14 years after the setting up of the panel, illegal industrial units were operating from residential areas and described the situation as "unfortunate".
The committee was constituted in 2004 in pursuance to the top court's order and comprises Delhi Police Commissioner, Commissioners of three civic bodies and Vice Chairman of Delhi Development Authority.
The court was told that till August, as many as 15,888 illegal industrial units were closed down.
Amicus curiae Ranjit Kumar informed the court that the illegal industrial units that would be shut have already been provided alternate plots in industrial areas. He said that despite this, some of these units were still continuing to operate from residential areas.
Directing the committee to ensure that these illegal units are closed within 15 days time, the court listed the matter for November 26.
Meanwhile, the court asked why those involved in illegal constructions or encroachments were being given 48-hour notices before acting against them.
Asking why action was not being taken without alerting them, the court observed that the notice period can be taken advantage of to cover up the violation of building bye-laws.
Seeking the Centre's response, the court observed that the advance notice was the reason why none of those operating illegal sex determination clinics was brought to book.