The AAP government which in its first week in power had decided to regularise Delhi’s unauthorized colonies will now crack down on encroachments that were made after February 14 – the day Arvind Kejriwal took oath as chief minister.
The move comes after the government received several reports of new unauthorised colonies and fresh encroachments by vendors, officials said. “Private builders are misusing government’s order (to regularise construction). The chief secretary on Friday directed all departments to check encroachment on their land,” a government official said.
Chief secretary Kewal Kumar Sharma has reportedly asked officers to initiate cases against property developers for unauthorized construction on government, agricultural, forest, MCD, gramsabha and other public lands after the AAP came to power.
Former bureaucrats, however, questioned February 14 as the cut-off date for such action.
“This means they will protect those who have broken the law before the election but take action against those who are doing it after. The government will have to bring a new law to do that,” said Omesh Saigal, former chief secretary of Delhi.
In a public rally at an unauthorized colony in northeast Delhi’s Karawal Nagar last Sunday, Kejriwal had promised residents that the government would soon start the process of registering the illegal clusters but appealed to them not to come up with more construction. “We have decided to regularise unauthorised colonies but I need your support now. Please don’t construct more colonies otherwise there will be no end to it,” Kejriwal had said.