It’s raining sops for Delhi’s residents in an election year. Succumbing to pressure from the traders’ lobby, the union urban development ministry has decided to regularise all existing commercial establishments on the ground floor of DDA flats located in mixed land use stretches. However, commercial activity will not be allowed in upcoming DDA flats.
This means that over one lakh shops in DDA flats in areas such as Mayur Vihar, Amar Colony, Kalkaji, East of Kailash, Lajpat Nagar, Munirka, Janakpuri, Rohini, Pitampura, Shalimar Bagh and Dwarka among others, will be spared closure.
In November 2006, the monitoring committee constituted by the Supreme Court had said that no shops would be allowed to run out of DDA flats and group housing societies.
On Tuesday, the ministry wrote to the DDA, asking it to modify the Master Plan 2021 to include these changes. Ministry officials said it would take about a month before the modifications are notified.
In another sop, the ministry has decided to allow all professional activities on ground floors and basements of homes in residential colonies in mixed land use areas. Earlier, only 11 designated professions like engineering, town planning, company secretaryship, etc. were allowed.
So far, apart from professional activities, only shops of area up to 20 square metres were allowed to run from ground floors and basements in residential areas.
Now, offices of property dealers, travel agents, and several other businesses will also benefit.
The ministry has also given in to demands by DDA flat owners — and regularised all projections and extensions that have come up in these flats up to February 7, 2008. The DDA has been directed to carry out a survey within two months from the date of notification about the projections which are eligible to be regularised.