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Tuesday, Nov 12, 2019

Ownership rights ended ‘uncertainity’ among residents of unauthorised colonies, says PM

delhi Updated: Nov 09, 2019 00:00 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday said the decision to confer ownership rights in unauthorised colonies had put an end to the “uncertainty” in which their residents lived for decades. Modi said successive governments could not do this despite tall promises by their leaders.

On Friday, senior Bharatiya Janata Party(BJP) leaders along with members of Residents Welfare Association (RWAs) of some unauthorised colonies met the PM at his residence to thank him for the decision. The union government named the scheme as ‘PM Uday Unauthorised Colonies in Delhi Awas Adhikar Yojana’.

Addressing the gathering,  Modi said, “You all have lived all your life in uncertainty. You had pinned your hopes (for regularisation) on successive governments, but you didn’t get the results.”

This decision is seen as a big move ahead of the assembly elections in Delhi scheduled next year.

The BJP is hoping to make inroads in unauthorised colonies, which played a decisive role in AAP’s victory in the 2015 assembly elections. Addressing the gathering, Modi said, “Delhiites have seen two Diwalis this time.”

Without naming any political party, the PM said such attempts were made by successive governments in the past as well but they did not yield any result. “Such attempts made in the past were half-baked and done with political calculation as vote-bank politics,” he said.

“Since independence, political culture or tradition had come up in which latkana, atkana aur bhatkana had become a norm. This led to (an atmosphere) of uncertainty,” Modi said.

The PM referred to the Centre’s decisions to abrogate Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir and to bring a new law to end triple talaq and mentioned how the decisions had put an end to uncertainty. “We have tried to end these uncertainties….Yeh kaam bhi mere hi naseeb mein tha(This work was also in my destiny),” Modi said.

Referring to the issue of unauthorised colonies, the PM said the matter was dragged for decades and his government has resolved to address the concerns of lakhs of residents living in these colonies.

“Since 2014, we have been trying to resolve the issue. We had hopes that the local government will make an effort to address this matter. But all the efforts got stuck at some level. We have decided to do it. Whether anyone takes the responsibility or not, but we will do it,” he said.

Joginder Dahiya, president of Federation of Narela (which comprises several RWAs of unauthorised colonies), said, “We received the provisional certificate in 2008. But since then, nothing happened. We met the PM and discussed the issue. Once we get the ownership rights, we will be able to take loans.”

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, however, said the move was possible after a long battle fought by the AAP government and the people of Delhi. He also suggested that people still have doubts that the Centre would not regularise these colonies as several announcements have been made in the past as well.

Kejriwal said, “Residents of Delhi are aware of the fact that we (the AAP government) have been fighting for regularisation of unauthorised colonies since 2015. But we do not want any credit for this. It is a victory for the people of the city. But there is anxiety among people. They are concerned if this announcement will also turn out to be just another election promise. The central government should keep this in mind. The BJP government at the Centre is responsible for the delay in the process. But we continued with our struggle. For us, this was not the first such instance. We have engaged in similar fights over multiple initiatives – from Mohalla Clinics to getting CCTV cameras installed across the city.”

Housing and urban affairs minister Hardeep Singh Puri said the process to implement the decision had already started. “We will start the registration work in the next 10-15 days. The decision will benefit over 40 lakh people living in these colonies,” Puri said and also divulged details about how the scheme will benefit people.

Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari reiterated the PM’s statement on how this decision had been pending for decades. “For 15 years, the Congress government gave assurance and for the last five years, the Aam Aadmi Party government has been talking about it. But nothing has been done so far. It is the Modi government which has finally delivered on its promise within 100 days,” Tiwari said.

Friday’s event was attended by senior party leaders, including Rajya Sabha MP Vijay Goel, Delhi MPs Ramesh Bidhuri and Hans Raj Hans.