Kochi: Market renovation stalled as land runs into legal trouble | Kochi News

KOCHI: The much-hyped Ernakulam market renovation project undertaken by Cochin Smart Mission Limited (CSML) is facing yet another hurdle. The land to which the stalls in the market were supposed to be shifted has caught in a legal tangle.
One of the owners of the land where the temporary stalls are to come up moved Supreme Court against taking over the premises for the temporary rehabilitation of merchants. “We had awarded the work to construct temporary stalls on the premises to a private firm on September 5, 2020. They should construct more than 200 temporary stalls within two months. Then, we will be able rehabilitate the existing merchants and start the renovation works of the market. But, one of the owners of the land moved court secured a stay against taking over of the premises for constructing temporary stalls and the work has been stalled,” an official with CSML said. “It was a couple of months ago that the premises had been allotted for operating temporary stalls for two years. The renovation of the market should be completed within two years,” the official said.
Corporation authorities said the measures to vacate the stay have been started. “Three sisters jointly own the said premises. There has been a legal case pending before the high court regarding the partition of the land. We held talks with the son of one of the sisters for securing the premises for the temporary rehabilitation of the merchants. He gave verbal consent to us. Then, he hinted about the case that is pending before the high court. He also advised us to secure a verdict from the high court for getting the land for the purpose. So, we moved the high court and the court allowed our plea,” mayor Soumini Jain said.
“Now, one of the owners moved the Supreme Court seeking a stay on the high court order. We don’t know why the owners changed their stance. However, we are taking measures to get the stay vacated,” Jain said.
The firm which had been awarded the work to construct temporary stalls had started ground clearance on the premises. “Meanwhile, some market stall owners came up with some disputes. We, somehow, sorted out the issues, and cleared the ground for starting the work on temporary stalls,” Jain said.

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