After introducing the policy for regularisation of unauthorised colonies in the state, the Punjab government is next planning to offer one-time settlement for buildings that are partially violating municipal building bylaws. The proposed policy will be applicable for illegal constructions within the jurisdiction of municipal bodies.
For the purpose, the government plans to bring in an ordinance. The department of local bodies has submitted the final proposal for the approval of the state cabinet. Only non-compoundable violations in buildings constructed in partial contravention of the building bylaws in municipal areas will come under the purview of the regularisation policy. Buildings constructed in violation of designated land use or any other act, such as the National Highways Act, will not be covered. Encroachments will also be excluded, HT has learnt from officials, who sought anonymity as they are not authorised to speak to the media.
Under the proposed policy, the regularisation will be done only if the building meets the required safety standards and has mandated parking provisions.
A senior official of the department associated with the formulation said, “People will be able to regularise their buildings on ‘as is where is’ basis. Regularisation will be permissible for 50% of the permissible floor area ratio (FAR). People will have to apply for regularisation of the building within a month of the notification of the policy. Another two months will be provided for completing all paper works and conditions.”
This is not the first time the state government has attempted to regularise unauthorised constructions by introducing a scheme for municipalities. The earlier attempt was made in 2004 but the act then was challenged in the Punjab and Haryana high court, and could not be implemented.
Critics of the proposed policy argue that it would only encourage further violations.
■ Lakhs of unauthorised buildings without approved building plans
■ Most violations are non-compoundable, meaning that they are not permissible against any fine under existig provisions
■ Most violations in commercial establishments, which stand to gain the most
■ Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Amritsar lead in number of illegal constructions; next come Bathinda, Patiala and Phagwara
The proposed solution
■ ‘As is where is’ regularisation
■ Adherence to safety standards and parking norms a must
■ 50% of the permissible floor area ratio or FAR
■ Only non-compoundable violations covered