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LDA tries new tack to tackle erring

UNABLE TO put a check on unbridled commercial activities in residential areas being undertaken with the connivance of its Enforcement Section staff, the LDA has decided to adopt a hitherto untested strategy to tackle the problem.

india Updated: May 09, 2006 00:00 IST

UNABLE TO put a check on unbridled commercial activities in residential areas being undertaken with the connivance of its Enforcement Section staff, the LDA has decided to adopt a hitherto untested strategy to tackle the problem.

Instead of sealing the unauthorised premises of the owner, the development agency has decided to cancel their lease on which the property was given to them by the LDA. This, the officials feel would serve as a greater deterrent for the owners of these illegal constructions than just the threat of sealing their structures. As a test case, the LDA has served notices to 35 of the 57 shopkeepers it has identified, who are carrying out their business in a residential locality in Sector-H of Kanpur Road Housing Scheme.

“These people are carrying out commercial activities from a residential area of our housing scheme that was earmarked for site and services plots ranging upward of 27 square metre,” said executive engineer Sanjiv Sinha   He said the show cause notice was the first step towards the lease cancellation process as mentioned in the hire purchase agreement on the basis of which these plots were given to the allottees. Section 9 of this agreement states that the transferee (the owner) “shall use the house and the land primarily for residential purposes only and shall not at any time carry out any trade or profession or perform any such act which may be a public nuisance or inconvenience the neighbours.”

Sinha is of the opinion that this provision of the agreement can be invoked against the owners of these commercial establishments as they have violated the conditions mentioned in the lease deed. “I am awaiting their (shop owners) their response,” he said adding that further decision in the matter would be taken only after consulting the LDA Vice-Chairman on the issue. From sweet meat shops like ‘Baimaan ke laddu’, motor repair workshops to even building a school, the entire row of these establishments on LDA’s hit-list are located from Ashiana Crossing (from E-2/139, SS 1884 till E3-382) to Sector-H of the Kanpur Road Housing Scheme.

But can LDA bell the fat cats on similar grounds in Gomti Nagar? Can the same approach also be applied to the influential owners of unauthorized commercial ventures being run from residential localities in Gomti Nagar? “We will have to segregate the area as all properties after 1998 have been sold by the LDA on a free-hold basis,” said another LDA official. Though, the terms and conditions of the property agreement remain the same, invoking them in the case of free-hold property holders would require a slightly long-drawn legal procedure, he pointed out. That perhaps is one reason why the owners of majority of illegal commercial complexes in Gomti Nagar have got their respective properties free-hold.