Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014

No allotment policy, so commercial complexes lie unused

The overbridge in Sector 17, Chandigarh. It was inaugurated last November. Around 40 booths have been constructed below it. The overbridge in Sector 17, Chandigarh. It was inaugurated last November. Around 40 booths have been constructed below it.
Written by Khushboo Sandhu | Chandigrah | Posted: June 24, 2014 3:26 am

The lack of proper planning before execution of projects is evident in the city, with some commercial complexes lying unused. Despite crores having been spent on the construction, there is an absence of a policy for allotment.

In November last year, an overbridge in Sector 17 was inaugurated. Around 40 booths have been constructed below it. The idea was to have a market similar to the one below the already existing overbridge. However, till now no policy for allotment has been finalised.

A proposal was mooted to start a food street in the area. Objections were raised by Chief Architect Sumit Kaur who stated that the design was not conducive to this purpose. A committee was also constituted to prepare a policy for allotment of the booths. A decision is to be taken whether these are to be auctioned or given on rent.

Former mayor Subhash Chawla during whose tenure the booths were inaugurated says that the policy for allotment is yet to be made. Though some proposals were discussed, a final decision has still not been reached.

Similar is the fate of the AC Fish and Meat Market in Sector 41. The proposal was mooted in 2007 and the booths constructed by the UT Administration were transferred to the Municipal Corporation for allotment. The aim was to provide a hygienic place to sell meat and fish.

It was decided to auction the booths on a leasehold basis and the reserve prices of different booths were kept between Rs 37 lakh and Rs 77 lakh. The sellers who were being targeted by the authorities found the prices to be on the higher side. Consequently, two auctions scheduled by the MC flopped, with no one turning up.

Following this, the MC approached the UT Finance Secretary, seeking permission for renting out the booths. This was, however, refused. A revised proposal has now been sent by the MC to the Finance Department.

Booths were also constructed in the subway connecting sectors 17 and 22. A number of these are lying vacant. In some cases, the rentals have not been paid by the allottees.

Municipal Commissioner Vivek Pratap Singh says, “The policy for the booths in Sector 17 is yet to be finalised and it is likely to take another month. The MC has to strike a balance between the social factors as well as profit. A revised proposal for the auction of the booths at Sector 41 market have been sent to the Finance Department. The reserve price of the booths is less than the market price.”

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