Over a hundred building plans are awaiting approval at the Building Branch of the UT Estate Office amidst the confusion over the possibility of denotifying the relaxation given to marla house two years ago and ensuing revision in the rates charged by UT Estate office for increasing Floor Area Ratio (FAR).
Officials of the Building Branch said that they have been accepting building plans submitted by city residents in the last two weeks but have not approved any plans so far. The weekly meetings between the officials of the Building Branch and Architecture department are also being held and the applications which have been accepted in the recent past are all being entered in the files.
An official of the Estate Office (EO) said,Since there is a move to increase the charges levied by the EO from residents to increase the FAR,we cannot approve building plans at this stage. In about a week or ten days,there would be new charges applicable. Who will bear the additional cost then?
A senior official in the UT EO said,Already,meetings have been held between the officials of the EO and Home Secretary. A decision in this regard is pending as the Deputy Commissioner is on leave these days.
Meanwhile,even as residents of the city cry foul over reported move of the UT Administration to withdraw the notification of relaxation given to marla houses,the UT Home Secretary cum chief administrator (Capital Projects),Ram Niwas,denied any such move. There is no such move to withdraw any notification as of now. I have also come to know about it through media, he said.
In 2009,the UT administration had notified the relaxation in building by-laws for marla houses and had allowed marla houses to have 70% built-up area on the ground floor. This way,the marla houses were allowed to cover more area in the courtyards and the covered area on the first and second floors was allowed to be be the same as the ground floor.
However,sources said that a recommendation of the Heritage Committee of the Advisory Council of the UT Administrator had suggested that the streets looks ugly and therefore there may be a uniformity in the houses across the city.
Already thousands of residents had made these need based changes in their houses.
Talking to Chandigarh Newsline,FOSWAC chairman P C Sanghi said,If the UT Administration denotifies the relaxations,it would be an anti people move and residents would be forced to come on streets.