Saturday, February 24, 2007

Building by-law violators to face imprisonment

Building by-law violators to face imprisonment
Deccan Herald

Those who have violated building by-laws could run the risk of facing imprisonment of three months, if the charges against them are proved, the Bangalore Development Authority has said in a report.

The report, a part of the petition dealing with the building by-law violations in Sadashivanagar, states that the BDA had granted permission for change of land use only to 23 buildings in the area as against the 100-odd buildings identified by Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) for violating the norm.

The issue is a fallout of a public interest litigation in which several residents of Sadashivanagar had complained that a large number of persons had violated building by-laws by effecting a change in land use without obtaining prior permission.

The BDA which had been directed by the High Court to file a status report, stated that while granting permission for change in land use with respect to the 23 buildings, it had followed the norms before making a recommendation to the government, which has the final word.

The BDA made it clear that permission for change in land use could be granted only if the road width in the area was more than 40 feet. Persons seeking change in land use had to apply to the BDA, which would invoke provisions of Section 14 (A) of the Karnataka Town and Country Planning Act.

The BDA had inspected the area, considered the feasibility and then published the matter in newspapers, before recommending to the government to allow the request for change in land use.

The BBMP stated that since the violative buildings came under its jurisdiction, it had the power to impose fines.

Following a public interest litigation, the Karnataka High Court had directed the BBMP to conduct an inspection and file a status report. The BBMP then sealed several properties which were found to be in violation of the norms. However the building owners approached the court and obtained a stay.


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