iconimg Saturday, August 29, 2015

Vinod Kumar, Hindustan Times
Chandigarh, April 11, 2013
The building of entrepreneur development centre (EDC), an ambitious project of the UT administration, has not been granted fire safety no-objection certificate (NOC) after it failed the fire risk assessment conducted by the UT fire department.
As per norms, obtaining an NOC is mandatory once the construction of a building is complete in all aspects. The NOC is issued for a prescribed time period and has to be renewed thereafter.

According to sources, during risk assessment water seepage from the roof on the second floor of the building was noticed after the sprinklers were turned on. Besides, more issues had come to fore.

After the inspection of the building, a complete list of defects was handed over to the engineering department for rectification.

UT chief engineer SK Chadha said, “Certain shortcomings were noticed and we are working to rectify them.” He added that a thorough inspection would be conducted before carrying out another fire risk assessment.

When contacted, UT secretary, Information Technology, Prerna Puri said they are expecting to get the NOC soon.

With no fire NOC, the process of allocation of space to successful bidders, which has already been marred by delays, will be delayed further.

The administration had opened bids for allocation of space on January 9. The authorities, twice in the past, undertook the process of allocating space in EDC, but failed to do so on both occasions.

The office space available at EDC comprises 19 bays covering around 20,189 sq feet. Out of 19 bays, 11 are fully furnished and are reserved for young entrepreneurs (YEs), while eight unfurnished bays have been earmarked for small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Equipped with plug-and-play facilities, bays meant for young entrepreneurs attracted 10 entrepreneurs while there were no takers for eight bays reserved for SMEs in the bid.

The reserve licence fee for young entrepreneurs was fixed at Rs. 25 per sq feet per month and Rs. 50 per sq per month for small and medium enterprises.

The four-storey centre built at a cost of Rs. 18 crore was inaugurated by the then UT administrator Gen SF Rodrigues (retd) in November 2009. Of the total expenditure incurred, the administration had invested Rs. 9 crore, while the remaining amount was borne by the union government under the assistance to states for developing export infrastructure and allied activities scheme.