Wadiyars claim ownership over Lalitha Mahal helipad following court order

Claiming ownership over the Lalitha Mahal helipad and certain adjoining areas following a High Court order in their favour, the erstwhile royal family of Mysuru has erected a gate leading to the helipad and a signboard warning trespassers of legal action.

Addressing a press conference here on Saturday, Pramoda Devi Wadiyar, wife of the late Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar, said they had decided to erect the gate and put up a signboard to prevent unauthorised encroachment of the land in the light of some claimants putting up fences in the vicinity claiming ownership.

She, however, said the authorities were free to use the helipad if it was needed. “Only the main entrance to the helipad has been secured with a gate and a security guard while the helipad remains unfenced and accessible,” she said and added that vehicles can go into the helipad area.

The helipad was part of the several acres of land in Survey No. 41 in Alanahalli, Survey No. 4 in Kurubarahalli, and Survey No. 39 in Chowdanahalli that had been declared as B Kharab land by the Deputy Commissioner of Mysuru. However, erstwhile royal family, which had claimed ownership of the land on the basis of the 1950 treaty between the Union of India and the Maharaja of Mysore, moved the High Court, which set aside in June 2020 the Deputy Commissioner’s ruling that it was B Kharab land, Ms. Wadiyar claimed.

Though the land belonging to the royal family was spread across 1,500 acres covering Lalitha Mahal Palace and surrounding areas at the time the treaty was signed, Ms. Wadiyar said the royal family was not claiming ownership of the entire area. She did not rule out some areas changing hands legally since 1950.

However, she expressed concern over land grabbers encroaching property in the area.

She said she has requested the Revenue Department to carry out a survey and demarcate the areas belonging to the royal family and also identify genuine owners of the land. She has also urged the Revenue Department to refer to them any claimants of the land in the area so that they can verify the claim for genuineness.

Ms. Wadiyar also clarified that the State government had not gone in appeal against the High Court ruling in favour of the royal family even though the order was issued in June 2020.

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