Punjab Land Preservation Act
This legislation was enacted to save the soil from erosion. At the time of enactment it was applicable to whole of Punjab. Now it is applicable to whole of the State of Haryana. Areas of northern Haryana along the Shiwalik hills which are prone to soil erosion due to water flow in the rugged and slopy terrain and areas of southern and western Haryana which are prone to erosion both by air and water have been put under restriction of certain activities under this law.
An act to provide for the better preservation and protection in certain areas in 10 districts of Haryana namely :- Panchkula, Ambala, Yamuna Nagar, Mewat, Gurgaon, Palwal, Faridabad, Mahindergarh, Rewari & Bhiwani.
Act can be divided into 6 major portions containing 22 section altogether. Section 2 deals with the definitions. Section 3 to Section 7A empower the government to notify and regulate certain areas, restrict or prohibit, by general or special order, within notified areas certain activities and to require execution of works and taking of other measures as deemed necessary to protect these areas. Section 8 to Section 11 endows the government control over the beds of chos. Section 13 deals with the power to enter upon and delimiting notified areas and beds. Section 14 and 15 are related with inquiry into claims and award of compensation. Section 16 to Section 18 lay down procedure for proclaiming notifications and of serving notices, orders and processes, issued under the Act. Section 19 to Section 22 are related with penalty for offences, bar of suits and applicability of Indian Forest Act, 1927.
In respect of areas notified under section 3 generally or the whole or any part of any such area, the State Government may, by general or special order, temporarily regulate, restrict or prohibit.
The clearing or breaking up or cultivating of land not ordinarily under cultivation prior to the publication of the notification under section 3.
The quarrying of stone or the burning of lime at places where such tone or lime had not ordinarily been so quarried or burnt prior to the publication of the notification under section 3.
The cutting of trees or timber or the collection or removal or subjection to any manufacturing process, otherwise than as described in clause (b) of this sub-section of any forest-produce other than grass save for bona fide domestic or agricultural purposes of right-holder in such areas.
The setting on fire of trees, timber of forest produce.
The admission, herding pasturing or retention of sheep, goats or camels.
The examination of forest-produce passing out of any such area; and
The granting of permits to the inhabitants of towns and villages situated within the limits or in the vicinity of any such area to take any tree, timber or forest produce for their own use there from, or to pasture sheep, goats or camels or to cultivate or erect buildings therein and the production and return of such permits by such persons.
In respect of any specified village or villages, or part or parts, thereof, comprised within the limits or any area notified under section 3 of the State Government may, by special order temporarily regulate, restrict or prohibit –
The cultivating of any land ordinarily under cultivation prior to the publication of the notification under section 3.
The quarrying of any stone or the burning of any lime at places where such stone or lime had ordinarily been so quarried or burnt prior to the publication of the notification under section 3.
The cutting of trees and timber or the collection or removal or subjection to any manufacturing process, otherwise than as described in clause (b) of this sub-section of any forest-produce for any purposes; and
The admission, herding, pasturing or retention of cattle generally other than sheep, goats and camels, or of any class or description of such cattle.
Any persons who, within the limits of any area notified under section 3, commits any breach of any regulation made, restriction or prohibition imposed, order passed or requisition made under sections 4, 5, 5-A or 7-A shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to one month, or with a fine which may extend to one hundred rupees, or with both.
The area closed under section 4 & 5 of this act is recorded as forest in the government records. As per the interim order of Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in CWP 202, provisions of Forest Conservation Act, (1980) apply in the areas notified under this Act