In the capital, building norms and rules don't mean anything when it comes to constructing buildings.
From using sub-standard material to flouting the set norms, the builder mafia keeps constructing mindlessly without fearing the law, which they bend easily using their monetary muscles.
In Delhi, lakhs of properties have been constructed illegally and await the same fate as the one that collapsed in Lalita Park on Monday evening. Experts say that building norms and rules have not
been adhered to by the owners and the civic agencies also do not enforce the bye-laws properly.
“Due to increase in population, high-rise buildings are being constructed, but all safety norms are being ignored while constructing them. The National Building Code (NBC) has laid down certain norms. For instance, in Delhi, a height of only 15 meters is allowed from the road level but most buildings coming up are openly violating this. Naturally, they will collapse,” says Pradeep Chaturvedi, safety expert and member of Consulting Engineering Association of India.
Experts further say that though the government approved the NBC in 2003, none of the civic agencies such as the Delhi Development Authority, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) and Municipal MCD are enforcing it.
The MCD on the other hand says it is the owner’s duty to ensure that all rules are adhered to as no checks take place during the construction.
"The building walls are supposed to have a nine-inch width with steel reinforced pillars for safety. However, to save money, buildings are constructed using four-inch wall making them structurally unsafe. Just by looking at the building we can’t tell if any deviation has taken place. We can’t be blamed for everything," said a senior MCD official.