After failing to keep a check on the encroachments in Sector 22 and nearby areas, the UT administration on Friday asked UT police, Estate Office and the municipal corporation to work in collaboration to put an end to the problem that has been growing in all parts of the city.
According to the UT directive, the responsibility of the officials who will not be able to keep a check on encroachments in their areas will be fixed. Senior officials such as sub-divisional magistrate (central) or a senior officer of any of the three departments has been asked to visit these areas to check violations.
Officials have been told to submit photographic and videographic reports of every day inspections to MC additional commissioner Sarita Malik.
Sub-inspectors of the MC have been directed to keep a strict watch in these areas from 10am and 9pm.
"The move comes after the Punjab and Haryana high court had sought a reply from the UT and the MC over encroachments in the city. The HC had rapped the UT and the civic body for showing "a complete lack of will to curb encroachments".
Though the MC conducted 50 drives against encroachment and collected nearly `1.2 crore as fine in 2014, it has completely failed to curb the problem.
Additional commissioner Sarita Malik claims efforts have been made to break the nexus between enforcement staff and violators, adding that drives have been held to put an end to the problem.
Public places -be it the market corridors, roadside walkways or parking lots-continue to be gobbled up. The areas that are badly affected include Sectors 15, 17, 19, 20, 22 and 35.
Speaking to HT, Malik said, "We hope that this move will help in curbing the encroachment problem."
Former mayor Subhash Chawla said, "The problem of encroachment can't be solved unless political outfits stop siding encroachers for votes. Political patronage, indeed, is one of major reasons for the failure of campaigns against encroachment as local politicians treat these violators as a potential vote bank.