Thursday, November 29, 2007

'Sakrama to benefit big builders, not commoners'

'Sakrama to benefit big builders, not commoners'
Thursday November 29 2007 06:14 IST

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BANGALORE: Karnataka government’s amendment to Karnataka Town and Country Planning (KTCP) Act to extend onetime amnesty to violators of building bylaw seems to have invited criticism from all segments of society. Former mayors of Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), civic society, builders and common men are apprehensive of the move.

Palike officials always colluded with violators and issued occupancy certificates (OC) to buildings with deviations. Once OC is issued, the Palike will have to take action against the official who issued it despite deviations.

BUILDERS: On Wednesday, Greater Bangalore Builders’ Association condemned Sakrama and termed it a mere device to harass builders and individual property owners. Association president Shripathi Rao told reporters that the government decision to fix slabs to regularise violations was arbitrary.

"They say that 50 per cent deviations in case of residential buildings and 25 per cent in case of commercial buildings can be regularised but there was no survey conducted before fixing these limits. Further, Sakrama demands separate penalty for setback violations and Floor Area Ratio (FAR) deviations.

"There can be no FAR deviation without setback violation and the citizen ends up paying twice for the same violation. In fact, the owner of a two-storeyed building ends up paying about Rs 4 lakh for regularisation," he said. The As sociation urged the Governor to put on hold further implementation of Sakrama.

CIVIL SOCIETY: Abhyudaya, a resident welfare association, has filed a PIL before the High Court against Sakrama. The HC observed on Tuesday that Palike was aiding violators through Sakrama and that ‘sharks’ of building industry were benefitting the most.


Most of Bangalore MLAs had been against it right from the day it was proposed by HD Kumaraswamy government.

The amendment was rejected by the Governor twice. The amendment was still pushed through legislature. Former minister R Ramalinga Reddy and former mayors P R Ramesh and J Huchchappa have written to the Governor urging him to put Sakrama on hold till a popular government is formed in the State. Most big building complexes comprise serious FAR and setback violations.

As a consequence, mayors and town planning committee heads ‘visited’ these buildings and builders had to ‘spend’ heavily everytime. In the guise of Sakrama, the builders would get relief forever from the harassment.

Many builders have taken up projects with more FAR accounting for new compoundable limits to make most of the drive, said sources.

On the other hand, individual dwelling units were never on Palike enforcement radar as it was violation out of need as against builders’ violation for greed.


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