Role of MC officials under scanner for not constructing EWS houses

  • Hillary Victor, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Mar 04, 2016 14:38 IST

The role of senior municipal corporation officials has come under the scanner for not constructing 27 houses for the economic weaker section (EWS) category at the Uppal Housing Society in Manimajra.

HT in an investigation has found that the MC officials chose not to take action against the housing society as it submitted its building plan and application for getting occupation certificate to the UT administration instead of the civic body.

As per the norms, the housing society was to get all approvals from the municipal corporation as it had auctioned land for the project.

The issue, which has been pending with the UT vigilance department for the past four years, came up in the MC House on February 29 when Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) councillor Satish Kainth wrote a letter to the MC, seeking the status of EWS flats at the housing society.

The then UT chief architect had approved the zoning plan of 5.39 acres of land, with the rider that 15 % of the total numbers of houses should be constructed for EWS category having a minimum area of 200 square feet.

Even the MC House meeting in August 2002 had approved that 15 per cent EWS houses to be constructed as part of the project. But surprisingly, when MC officials advertised for auction in October 2005, they did mention the EWS houses.

Most of the officials under question are either retired or have been transferred.

Former Congress councillor Chander Mukhi Sharma, who also raised the issue in the House, said, “It is unfortunate that the vigilance department has not taken any action even after four years.

Strict action should be taken against the guilty officials of the MC and the vigilance department who are sitting on the file for the past four years.”

In April 2011, a committee under the then joint commissioner Kamlesh Kumar was constituted to inspect the EWS houses. In his report, Kumar said that despite no EWS houses constructed the MC has not taken any action against the Uppals and officials concerned.

In May 2011, Chander Mukhi Sharma had filed a complaint with the Central Bureau of Investig ation ( CBI) on the issue following which the probe agency in a note held the society guilty of not constructing the EWS houses.

The CBI had recommended that further probe may be conducted by the department and action may be initiated against the erring official(s) who were party to the process of land allotment, sanctioning of the building plan, making inspections and issuing the occupation certificate.

The recommendation was sent to the UT administration following which the case was handed over to the vigilance department.

MC joint commissioner Rajeev Gupta said, “We have constituted a committee under sub-divisional engineer (building) to check the status of EWS houses. The panel will submit the report within seven days.”

When contacted, UT adviser Vijay Kumar Dev said, “We have sought a detailed report on the issue. Once the report comes, action will be initiated accordingly.”

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