IN WHAT is likely to be the biggest issue in the upcoming civic body elections, the Congress and the BJP Monday blamed each other for the “unlivable” conditions in unauthorised colonies. For around 40 lakh residents in these colonies, arguably the city’s most sought-after electorate, nothing is concrete other than the rules governing their presence. In 2011, owners were asked to pay Rs 200 per sq/metre as development charge for regularisation, and to get various basic amenities such as water supply, drainage and road connectivity. Of these, 895 colonies were shortlisted, and 733 received NOCs from all agencies concerned.
However, five years after the first announcement for regularisation was made, only nine of the 1,639 colonies received the tag of “unauthorised regularised”. Incidentally, since trifurcation of the unified MCD, no survey has been conducted with respect to regularisation, by the South Delhi Municipal Corporation’s own admission. Of all colonies identified for regularisation, 1,008 are under SDMC.
Congress councillor Virender Kasana blamed the BJP for “betraying the trust of voters” from unauthorised colonies. “You have no right to seek their votes because neither have you done anything to make their lives better nor pressured the government to pursue regularisation,” he said.
The BJP blamed the Congress for the current condition of unauthorised colonies. “Your government stripped BJP of its powers and barred MCDs from spending funds on development in these colonies. When Sheila Dikshit gave provisional certificates in these colonies, Congress was in power, it could have cleared the proposals for once,” former South Delhi mayor Sarita Chaudhary said.