Owners of about 400 plots and houses in various sectors of Jankipuram Housing Scheme of LDA on Sitapur Road may lose their property, almost two decades after the land scam that caused a loss of Rs. 2 crore to the LDA in 1993.
The Lucknow Development Authority (LDA) has decided to initiate legal proceedings to cancel the sale deeds of owners of 400 controversial properties that were bought fraudulently. The development agency which had initially mooted a proposal for regularisation of these properties, made a U-turn following objection from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The CBI, which was asked by the Allahabad High Court to probe the scam, has already submitted a report indicting several officials in the property scam.
The decision to cancel the registries, a long-drawn legal procedure not easy to implement, was taken at a meeting of the LDA board presided over by commissioner Sanjiv Saran here on Friday. Another highlight of the meeting was the nod to change in land use of 850-acres Chak Ganjaria farmland, a money-churner project of the state government, which seems to have taken top priority against the proposed Lucknow metro rail.
The only hitch for the Chak Ganjaria project seems to be the fact that 55% of its land comes under the extended area master plan of the city. The development blueprint of this region has now been awaiting the state government’s nod for more than a year. “As is the rule, we will notify land use changes for public to file their objections or suggestions, if any,” said LDA vice chairman AP Tiwari, adding that land use conversion charges, wherever applicable, would be realised from the authorities.
Except for a large chunk of land earmarked as residential for a hi-tech township, the development regulator in a controversial move kept almost all area under the new extended area master plan as green. Though aimed at checking unauthorised growth (as plot owners would have to apply and pay charges for conversion of land use from residential to green), the decision has drawn flak from the public for favouring those with deep pockets.
On the regularisation of unauthorised buildings/structures under the extended area building plan of which has been approved by local panchayats, the LDA VC said the proposal had been referred to the state government for a final decision. “We have now framed certain guidelines for legalising such constructions, which would soon be made public for people’s reaction and comment,” said senior town planner Ravi Jain. Another much-awaited proposal related to launch of LDA’s new Prabandh Nagar Housing Scheme on Sitapur Road got deferred.
“The proposal was appreciated by the officials but we have decided to have a re-look at the compensation and rehabilitation norms before starting work on the scheme,” said LDA VC Tiwari.