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Report No. 138

6.6. Need for statutory protection against withholding of essential services and facilities.-

In order to make the statutory protection of slum dwellers against eviction meaningful and effective, it is, therefore, desirable to provide that a local authority shall not withhold or refuse to provide any essential supply or service to a slum dweller without just or sufficient cause or discontinue or cut off the same without giving notice to the occupant to set right the fault or defect if an existing supply is sought to be discontinued or cut off. Minimum two months notice is what is required so that the occupier gets sufficient time to make good the fault, defect or deficiency on the basis of which the existing supply service etc. is withheld etc.

For thus purpose, "essential supply or service. Contravention of this provision should be visited with suitable penalty, as also by suitable remedial action by the civil court. Besides this, since the matter concerns essential services, there should be adequate provision for the award of interim relief for restoration of supply by the civil court and also for passing (at the final stage) orders awarding compensation in case of wrongful deprivation of essential service, etc.

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