Bawana factory owners meet minister Jain, seek policy for freehold ownership of land
Owners of factories operating out of the Bawana Industrial Area on Thursday met Delhi industries minister Satyendar Jain and demanded a policy for freehold ownership of the units.
The move comes as the Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (DSIIDC) has, over the last one week, issued showcause notices to 11,000 industrial units in Bawana for violation of lease conditions as most allottees have either rented out or sold the units, which is against the norm.
According to sources, the DSIIDC has issued four different notices — for change of trade, renting out premises, sale and purchase of plots and cancellation of allocation for those that have remained closed for some time — to each of the units. In the notices, the DSIIC has asked the owners of the units to explain why their leases should not be cancelled.
“The notices were issued over the past one week. This is despite the fact that we have long been demanding that ownership of industrial plots be made freehold for the ease of business. All other industrial areas in the city are freehold except for DSIIDC’s Bawana and Narela,” said Subhash Khanna, a member of Bawana Friends’ Industrial Welfare Association.
The Bawana Industrial Area has a total of 16,350 plots, of which around 12,000 are functional factory units. The industrial area was set up by the DSIIDC following a Supreme Court order of 2004 which called for relocation of small-scale industries that were running in residential areas to outer Delhi’s Bawana and Narela.
On Thursday, members of the Confederation of Relocated Industries (Bawana) met Jain at his residence, and demanded relief for the same. “We met the minister and asked him to give relief to factory owners. The minister has assured us that the government will come up with a policy on the issue within a week,” said Rajeev Kumar Goel, coordinator of the confederation.
Conferring ownership right to plot owners, Goel said, will also help the government as revenue will be increased. It will also ensure that there are no illegally run factories. In 2015, the AAP government had proposed to make all factories in the industrial area freehold so that ownership could be kept in check.
Most of these factories are rented out by the original allottees of the plots, even as it is against DSIIDC rules.
The members were supported by the Aam Aadmi Party’s traders’ wing.
“Factories in Bawana were not given proprietary rights as they were given on lease. Proprietary rights will allow owners to take loan from banks directly for their business instead of going to moneylenders,” Brijesh Goyal, convener, AAP traders’ wing, said.
Meanwhile, despite repeated attempts by HT, Jain was not available for a comment on the issue.
For the uninitiated, Dhan Mill Compound, a former granary and a cluster of warehouses, has morphed into the city’s modish food, fashion, design and lifestyle destination. Its streets are lined with art cafes, home décor outlets, ateliers, art galleries, pottery studios, dance halls and high-end boutiques, whose facades and interiors are as interesting and experimental as the wares they deal in. Interestingly, all of these fancy establishments are housed in re-purposed warehouse buildings, which still have metal roofs.
According to a Delhi government official, a break-up of the total jobs, including the list of employers and the number of people they hired, will be shared “in a couple of days”. Notably, the government portal was launched by chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on July 27, 2020, to help entry-level and blue-collar job seekers connect with employers at a time when the Covid-19 induced lockdown left many people unemployed.
“Manufactures, and start-ups which are working on alternatives to single-use plastic have to pay more GST for raw material. Hence, the Delhi government will write to the Centre and request a reduction in GST rates,” Delhi environment minister Gopal Rai said.
Safdarjung, Delhi’s base weather station, recorded 0.1mm of rainfall between 8:30am and 5:30pm on Sunday. The Capital recorded 1.9mm of rainfall on Saturday and 117.2mm on Friday, making the monthly total 119.2mm so far. The normal monthly average for July is 210.6mm, said weather experts.
Monsoon elevates Adam Khan’s tomb into an emergency sanctuary for passersby (and dogs) speared by sudden showers. Perched atop a Mehrauli hillock, the monument overlooks the Qutub Minar, which appears totally bechara and defenceless in the heavy rain.