Months after the Supreme Court pulled up the governments of Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand for “fighting” with each other “like children” over the ownership of a resort located in Haridwar, UP formally handed over the ownership of Hotel Alaknanda to the hill state on Monday. The Uttarakhand CM announced this at a function at Parmarth Niketan in Rishikesh. “With this, a long pending dispute over the hotel has been resolved,” said the CM.
Giving details, Darshan Singh Rawat, media advisor to the CM, told TOI, “Ownership rights of the hotel have been transferred to Uttarakhand and now Uttar Pradesh will construct another hotel in the adjoining land which belongs to the neighbouring state.”
TOI had earlier reported that UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath had given in-principle approval of transfer of disputed Hotel Alaknanda in Haridwar, which was being managed by UP, to Uttarakhand. Since 2004, both states are contesting a civil suit in the Supreme Court over the ownership rights of the hotel.
In November, a bench headed by Justice M B Lokur of the apex court had said, “Why are you fighting over this property like children? UP is such a big state. It is not proper for the two states to fight over a small property,” the judge had said.
The hotel located on a prime piece of land along the Ganga river bank was built in the late 1960s. Its ownership was transferred to the UP State Tourism Development Corporation Limited (UPSTDCL) after the corporation’s formation in 1974. When Uttarakhand was carved out of UP in 2000, the newly formed state demanded that the hotel be transferred to it considering that Haridwar had become part of Uttarakhand. When this was not done, the matter reached the Supreme Court where it has been going on for well over a decade.
A number of other properties in the area earlier belonging to UP like a guest house at Piran Kaliyar near Roorkee, Rahi Motel in Haridwar and Dam Kothi, a guest house near Mayapur Dam on the Ganga banks have already been transferred to Uttarakhand.