The Madras High Court bench here has ordered that status quo be maintained with regard to the Madurai Corporation’s move to evict eight families from Ambalakaranpatti near Uthangudi to construct ‘Green Houses’ under the State government’s welfare scheme.

S.M.A.Jinnah, the counsel for the families, claimed that the litigants had settled in the ‘Natham lands’ at Ambalakaranpatti in 2002, under the Natham Settlement Scheme where the government provided lands free of cost to the landless poor.

The petitioners had submitted a representation to the Madurai collector seeking pattas and the representation is pending before the tahsildar of Madurai North Taluk, the counsel claimed.

“Ambalakaranpatti was under the Uthangudi Panchayat limits when the lands were distributed to the petitioners. In 2011, Ambalakaranpatti was merged with the Madurai Corporation limit. Since then the petitioners have continued to pay their house and water taxes to the Corporation”, Mr Jinnah contended.

According to him, the Corporation authorities announced the move to evict the petitioners from their lands in order to construct the Green Houses. The counsel alleged that no eviction notice has been issued to the petitioners to date. The eviction is illegally, he claimed.

Mr Jinnah pleaded that the court should direct the administration to provide pattas. The court adjourned the case by two weeks.