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GDA set to launch demolition drive

THE GORAKHPUR Development Authority is all set to launch an anti-encroachment drive against unauthorised constructions in various parts of the city. The GDA has identified about 3,000 illegal constructions. Though officials had marked multi-storeyed buildings even in posh areas, no major drive was launched in the last 18 months to demolished these constructions as they belonged to people with strong political connections.
None | By ABDUR Rehman, Gorakhpur
PUBLISHED ON JUL 28, 2006 12:20 AM IST

THE GORAKHPUR Development Authority is all set to launch an anti-encroachment drive against unauthorised constructions in various parts of the city.

The GDA has identified about 3,000 illegal constructions. Though officials had marked multi-storeyed buildings even in posh areas, no major drive was launched in the last 18 months to demolished these constructions as they belonged to people with strong political connections. These buildings have increased the problems of traffic movement and drainage in various parts of the city.

Talking to Hindustan Times, GDA secretary Vijay Bahadur Singh admitted that the authority had not yet carried out any impressive drive to demolish unauthorised constructions. But, that has changed now with the GDA planning a month-long drive to demolish these structures.

He said notices were issued to the owners of around 2,800 unauthorised constructions. He added that the authorities were all set to launch a crackdown on encroachers.

Responding to a question, Singh said the shortage of staff and uncertainty regarding top officials of the authority had delayed the demolition drive. Sources said there were 13 junior engineers and other staff in the GDA to identify illegal constructions and participate in the drive. But in the past 18 months, they did not take adequate steps in this direction. Officials said they were is engaged in finalising the formalities for acquiring land at Sonbarsa, Pokhar Bhinda, Mughalpura and other areas for development of residential colonies. However, the GDA has now tightened its noose against unauthorised constructions and issued notices to their owners.

Some of these multi-storeyed buildings house clinics, nursing homes and showrooms. They have been warned against the commercial use of the buildings, which have been marked as residential. The GDA secretary said after conducting a spot inspection, he  came to know that the maps of these buildings were approved for godowns, but the owners had constructed the building in violation of the approved map. A case has been registered against them. He said the hearing in these cases was going on and hinted that these buildings may be demolished.

Several clinics and other commercial activities are being conducted in the residential flats of GDA. Officials have planned to scrutinise the maps and conduct an on-the-spot inspection in the respective areas.

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