Bhubaneswar Development Authority / Silent on illegal buildings

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Bhubaneswar Development Authority silent on illegal buildings
BHUBANESWAR: BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation's strong posturing against illegal flats at Campa Cola Compound in Mumbai hogged national limelight, but back here more than 4, 000 unauthorized buildings continue to stand tall despite being slapped with demolition orders.

The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) in its latest report, tabled in the assembly on Monday, on general and social sector for 2012 pointed out that orders for razing 5, 687 structures in the city were issued between 1988 and 2012.

However, Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) has not touched 4, 025 of them even five years after the orders were issued.

The BDA didn't bulldoze 84 buildings between 2001 and 2011 because of inaction of its enforcement wing, CAG pointed out.

Similarly, 73 buildings in Cuttack were not pulled down despite demolition orders, the audit watchdog added.

CAG said cases have been filed against 19, 846 unauthorized constructions in the Orissa Development Authorities (ODA) court since 1988. These include 437 high-rise buildings.

The BDA, in its clarification, told the audit body that it had only one excavator, which was not sufficient to carry out demolition work, involving concrete base. Stay orders passed by various courts and unavailability of police were the other bottlenecks in its demolition drives. The agency told CAG that it has adopted implosion (controlled blast) method, which will be used for demolishing unauthorized constructions in future.

BDA and Cuttack Development Authority (CDA) have also failed to remove encroachers from 39-acre government land worth Rs 105.55 crore allotted to them. Apart from slum dwellers, builders have encroached on land between their plots and roads by constructing boundary walls, security rooms and parking spaces, CAG pointed out.

The audit body indicated lack of coordination between the planning and the enforcement wings. Of the 2, 944 cases referred to the enforcement wing of BDA for investigation, following complaints and petitions, no investigation was done in 527 cases. More than four years had elapsed in case of 436 such complaints, the CAG said.

Despite repeated attempts, BDA vice-chairman Krishan Kumar and enforcement officer Debabrata Dash could not be contacted for comments.

Jul 29, 2014

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