The High Court yesterday issued a rule upon the government to explain in two weeks why it should not be directed to preserve the land of Wonderland amusement park as an open public space.
Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (Rajuk) on Monday demolished the main entrance and boundary wall of the park to free around four acres of land of Gulshan central playground following what they said was a Supreme Court verdict.
The HC in response to a writ petition directed the authorities concerned not to lease the land of the park situated in the capital's Gulshan area to anybody till disposal of the rule.
It also ordered the chairman of Rajuk and administrators of Dhaka City Corporations to continue their eviction activities until further order.
The HC bench of Justice AHM Shamsuddin Choudhury Manik and Justice Jahangir Hossain Selim came up with the rule and order following a writ petition moved by Manzill Murshid on behalf of Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh (HRPB).
HRPB leaders Asaduzzaman Siddiqui and Sarwar Ahad Chowdhury filed the petition yesterday morning following media reports that a five-star hotel will be constructed at the place of Wonderland after its land is recovered.
During the hearing on the petition, Manzill Murshid told the court that as per Rajuk's layout plan, the land of the park is earmarked as an open public place but people could not use it freely.
Thus the site where Wonderland is should be preserved as a public park, the counsel said.
Without legal authority, DCC leased out the said portion of Gulshan central playground to M/s Via Media to develop Wonderland commercial amusement park in 1990.
Wonderland subsequently indulged in all kinds of commercial activities with restaurants, shops and events like fair and concerts to churn money out of every inch of the space, said official sources.
Secretaries to the ministries of housing and public works, and land, Rajuk chairman and administrators of Dhaka City Corporations (North and South) have been made respondents to the rule.
Assistant Attorneys General Yeadia Zaman and Shahidul Islam represented the government.