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HindustanTimes Mon,21 Apr 2014

Govt most inefficient user of land: Kamal Nath

PTI  New Delhi, April 10, 2013
First Published: 21:35 IST(10/4/2013) | Last Updated: 21:37 IST(10/4/2013)

Highlighting that the government has been the most "inefficient" user of land in Delhi, union urban development minister Kamal Nath on Wednesday pitched for vertical growth to accommodate growing population of the city as he announced decision to regularise 1,640 unauthorised colonies.

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"...One of the most inefficient uses of the land is in Delhi itself. There is the biggest example. And one of the most inefficient users of land is the government itself," the minister said while delivering the inaugural address at the workshop on "Land Economics: Issues and Challenges" in New Delhi.

"In Delhi, it will be very very surprising. Go across the city and see any government building...it is not getting the most optimum use of the land," he said.

Strongly pitching for vertical growth of Delhi through high rise buildings, Kamal Nath said, "We are looking at where we can have efficient FAR (floor area ratio)" and suggested that the comparatively newly developed areas like Dwarka, Rohini and some urban villages can grow vertically.

He lamented that he was being subjected to criticism for his suggestion that Delhi should choose vertical growth.

Noting that there are 1,640 unauthorised colonies in Delhi with four million people living in them, Kamal Nath said a masterplan is being prepared by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and the ministry in its mid-term review is correcting what has gone bad.

"...Planning is not futuristic or prospective. It is retrospective in regularising. We are going to regularise 1,640 colonies. You can't throw out 4 million people living there," the minister said.

Last year, the Delhi government had announced regularisation of 895 colonies.

Kamal Nath also said that the land regulatory framework in the country is not successful and the very large informal land market addressing the needs of the economically weaker section and lower middle class income household has developed paving the way for "flawed urban land policies."

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