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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

Poll sop for 75 illegal colonies

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, January 05, 2013
First Published: 00:52 IST(5/1/2013) | Last Updated: 00:55 IST(5/1/2013)

The Sheila Dikshit government will soon start development work in 75 unauthorised colonies built either on forest land or close to ASI-protected monuments.

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The government will also regularise the portion of these colonies that does not fall within 100m of the monument or on the designated forest or ridge area.

The proposal is likely to be cleared in the special meeting of the Delhi cabinet on Saturday. Chief minister Dikshit and urban development minister Arvinder Singh will announce the relief given to these colonies in the midst of thousands of people living in unauthorised colonies in the "convention" of residents of unauthorised colonies at Talkatora Stadium later in the afternoon.

With assembly elections scheduled to take place later this year, the convention has been organised to resurrect the image of the ruling Congress among its voters.

Of the 1,218 unauthorised colonies given provisional regularisation certificate ahead of the Assembly elections in 2008, the Delhi government regularised 895 colonies in August this year.

A large number of unauthorised colonies that came up close to the ASI-protected monuments and on forest land or in the ridge area, however, did not figure in the list of the regularised colonies.

"We have now managed to clear the hurdles in the way of the regularisation of some of the colonies on ASI-protected and forest land. The part of the colonies which do not fall within 100m of ASI-protected monuments will now be regularised as will those that are situated away from forest land once the cabinet approves," minister Singh said.

However, the government will start development work even in the area of these colonies which will be left out of the regularisation process.

"The rule says that there can be no construction within 100m of ASI-protected monuments. And the law says construction of road, drains and other civic amenities is not counted as construction. We have clarity on this issue and we will now be able to start development work even in parts falling within 100m,” Singh said.

According to urban development department officials, the cabinet is likely to approve the regularisation of 100-odd colonies on Saturday.

The list includes 30 colonies on ASI land, 45 colonies on forest land and remaining 25 colonies which either had multiple resident welfare associations or have scattered population.

"The approval from the cabinet does not mean regularisation. The regularisation list will be issued separately," a senior urban development department official said.

More ‘low density residential areas’
The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) had approved a policy to regularise 2,400-odd farmhouses in the capital in August last year. In a recent change to the policy, which is yet to receive the final seal of approval from the Centre, more areas have been added for “low density residential areas”.

According to the DDA policy, the majority of farmhouses in the urban extension areas are located on lands where ground water has already been severely depleted or close to such depletion.

Further intensification of residential density and heavy additional load on civic infrastructure is highly undesirable and that is why it wants to notify land areas containing existing farm house clusters as “low density residential area”.

The new list of areas where such development will be allowed include areas such as Satbari, Chattarpur, Khanpur, Devli, Fatehbpur Beri, Asola, Mehrauli and Bakhtawarpur.

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