The Delhi government might have been eyeing the lost votes with the move to regularise unauthorised colonies in the Capital, the three civic bodies have thrown up their hands at the proposal saying there was no money to provide amenities to such colonies.
Moreover, town planners are also sceptical that regularising before putting basic infrastructure in place would end up in an urban disaster.Senior officials of the three municipal corporations maintain building basic infrastructure such as schools, community halls, toilets, parking lots, drains, dispensaries and roads will be difficult since most of them are landlocked and have no space to accommodate the same. Providing funds for undertaking infra projects is another concern expressed by the civic bodies.
"Constructing roads and drains is not as big a challenge as providing facilities such as parking, schools, toilets, community halls, dispensaries and green space," said Manish Gupta, Commissioner, South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC). According to sources, almost 50 per cent of the colonies in south Delhi are illegitimate. "Land is a big issue but we will still try to provide civic services wherever we can," said SS Yadav, Commissioner, East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC).
As per the rules, after marking the boundaries of the colonies, the Delhi government will hand over the task of making layout plans for these colonies to the civic bodies.
Town planners feel that it will spell trouble for rest of the city.
"Regularisation simply means that sale and purchase of property will become legal in such colonies. As far as putting basic infrastructure in place is concerned some tough decisions have to be taken by the government. According to the Master Plan of Delhi, 2021, these colonies have to be re-developed and provided with a minimum open space. If all this is not done, then it will be an exercise in futility," said AK Jain, former (planning) commissioner, Delhi Development Authority (DDA).
The civic bodies, for long, have been demanding that they should be allowed to provide basic amenities in their areas, as in many wards huge chunk of population reside in unauthorised colonies.
"We'll need funds from the Delhi government to provide basic amenities in the colonies," said Subhash Arya, leader of the house, SDMC.
However, regularisation will help the civic bodies to add to their revenues by way of property tax, duty on sale and purchase of property, building plans fee and other taxes.