VUDA prepares list of instalment defaulters,not rehab plan

Residents are required,by their agreement with VUDA,to pay instalment of Rs 362/month no matter what

Written by Aditi Raja | Vadodara | Published:September 21, 2013 3:49 am

Instead of providing alternate accommodation for those rendered homeless in the twin building collapse,the Vadodara Urban Development Authority (VUDA) has prepared a list of about 100 residents of Madhavnagar Society in Atladara who have defaulted on the payment of their home instalments.

According to the agreement between flat allottees and VUDA,the residents have to pay their instalments,“under any circumstances,even in case of a tragedy”,as clearly specified in the agreement. This means that the residents will have to continue paying their instalments of Rs 362 a month,whether or not they have the roof over their heads.

The residents are yet to receive a reply about their alternate accommodation from the Vadodara Urban Development Authority. But,even as the officials fob off questions relating to the arrangement,three weeks after the twin building collapse on August 28 and the subsequent evacuation of 31 standing dilapidated towers,VUDA is said to have prepared a list of defaulters.

Santosh Jadhav,committee member of the society,said,“The officials from VUDA had verbally communicated to us that there are several defaulters in the list of instalments,and so before we make any demands for rehabilitation,we must pay up all the instalments. I have paid mine on August 21,just a week before the buildings collapsed. Now,if there are defaulters,can they keep us on the roads forever? They must initiate appropriate action after giving us our homes back.”

While VUDA officials deny having put forth any such conditions before the residents,they admitted that a defaulters’ list has been prepared. “There are at least 100 defaulters on that list. We have only included names of those who have not paid up instalments for over 12 months,” an official says.

The agreement between the VUDA and the residents also makes it clear that the residents have no right whatsoever to drag VUDA to court or demand any a action against them for any reason.

“It is only under these pre-conditions that the flats have been allotted to these people. Nowhere in the agreement is their any clarity on who the owner of the flat is. On one hand,the agreement states that VUDA is the “owner” and the residents only “purchasers”,on the other,it also does not give them the right to put any onus on the authorities for the substandard houses,” said Atul Gamechi,social activist and member of the Vadodara chapter of IAC,who has been campaigning for the rights of the Madhavnagar residents.

When contacted,J V Patel,Chief Executive Authority,VUDA,refused to comment on the matter of drawing up a defaulters’ list at a time when residents are awaiting allotment of alternate homes.

Residents shoot letter to CM,stage sit-in,rally

Residents of Madhavnagar Society sat on a dharna at the Sayajigunj crossroad on Friday in protest against the authorities’ failure in rehabilitating them after evacuating them from their homes.

The residents are demanding immediate accommodation in order to restore normalcy in their lives. The residents also drafted an open letter to Chief Minister Narendra Modi,expressing their displeasure at his “disinterest” in the matter.

The letter,addressed to Modi,stated,“You are proceeding towards Delhi,but you have simply forgotten the people of Vadodara who are suffering because of the corruption and the following inaction of your administration. You must rehabilitate us to be successful in real terms.”

Women and children led the peaceful protest march that lasted for three hours and ended around 6.30pm.

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