House gives nod to user charges for fire safety certificate

The UT Fire and Emergency Services department had proposed that user charges will have to be paid by those residential houses, where more than 20 people stay and they have to take a Fire safety certificate.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh | Updated: September 15, 2018 5:57:44 am
BJP and Congress councillors argue during the MC house meeting at MC Building in Sector 17, Chandigarh, on Friday. (Express photo by Kamleshwar Singh)

The General House approved user charges for various properties to obtain the fire safety certificate. Mayor Davesh Moudgil, however, stated that residential areas and societies (high-rise buildings and housing board flats) should be exempted from paying these charges. Thus, the House resolved that these categories be exempted.

The UT Fire and Emergency Services department had proposed that user charges will have to be paid by those residential houses, where more than 20 people stay and they have to take a Fire safety certificate.

Taking the fire safety certificate after getting an inspection done by the fire department will be the responsibility of the house owner. To obtain the fire safety certificate, the residential owner will have to submit a detailed plan showing the arrangement of pipelines, booster pumps and water tank at the office of the Chief Fire Officer. Apart from this, it was proposed that the fire certificate will be given after the payment of user charges of Rs 2,500 or Rs 5 per sq metre of the covered area, whichever is more.

“No user charges will be charged for any residential property. It will be there only for commercial properties,” said the mayor.

In case of the fire certificate which is to be obtained by commercial buildings, user charges will be Rs 5,000 or Rs 10 per sq m of the covered area whichever is more (for three years) while that for small booths will be Rs 2,500 or Rs 5 per sq m of the covered area whichever is more (for three years). In case of industries, the user charges to be paid for obtaining a fire safety certificate will be Rs 5,000 or Rs 7.50 per sq m of the covered area whichever is more.

House gives nod to Rs 27-cr renovation of three MC floors

The General House resolved the agenda of spending Rs 27 crore on the renovation of three floors of the MC. Though BJP Councillor Arun Sood gave his dissent note on this, stating that it wasn’t wise to spend this amount on the building even when roads had not been recarpeted and the general public was suffering.

“The general public has to use V6 roads every time they go to their House while they will visit the MC building just once in six months but still this renovation. I have told them that the agenda of road recarpeting be raised at the House meet next time for sure,” Sood told Chandigarh Newsline.

BJP councillors Raj Bala Malik and Arun Sood trade charges

The two were locked in a heated argument when Malik said it was just Sood who was speaking in the House. Malik even went to the extent of saying that he was “unnecessarily barking”. Sood flared up all of a sudden. “She should have some sense. Look at the kind of words she is using…that I am barking. I have facts with me. I spent five-and-a-half hours studying the agenda thoroughly and look what she is talking. I don’t know what she thinks of herself,” said Sood in the House.

As the issue threatened to spiral out of control, Mayor Davesh Moudgil had to adjourn the House for lunch.

Purchase of twin bins

As the MC had intended to purchase 650 more twin bins while 500 were being provided by Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL), questions were raised by the councillors. BJP Councillor Arun Sood said that when 500 twin bins will cost Rs 50 lakh then how could 650 twin bins cost Rs 35 lakh. The officials of Medical Officer of Health (MOH) wing stated that the type of bins in these 650 ones will be different and thus the estimate was Rs 35 lakh.

According to the garbage free protocol issued by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, one twin (blue and green bin) is required to be installed at a distance of 50 metres in commercial, tourist and public areas. Recently, a survey was conducted by MOH and it was found that 1,150 additional twin bins were required to be installed in various parts of the city to meet the full requirement.

Later, the MC requested GAIL and they said they would provide 500 twin bins while the civic body decide to purchase the rest on its own.

Wristwatches with GPS for employees

To keep a watch on their locations, the General House approved to obtain watches with GPS for the workers. This, according to MC, will help in tracking the work and the area covered by the workers. Also, it will help in checking fake attendance and absenteeism and tracking uninformed replacement. These watches will be obtained for all the employees, including the field staff – enforcement wing and others.

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