The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs Wednesday informed the Delhi High Court that they have redesigned their projects for redevelopment of seven government general pool residential accommodations (GPRAs) in south Delhi.
After the redesign, the affidavit filed by the Ministry says that the concept plan, architectural design and realignment of location of towers for six colonies has been changed, which will lead to a decrease of 739 housing units.
The Ministry added that cutting of trees will be avoided and wherever possible, relocation of trees through transplantation will be done. As per the affidavit, the old proposal for six colonies — Netaji Nagar, Sarojini Nagar, Mohammadpur, Kasturba Nagar, Sriniwaspuri, and Tyagraj Nagar, there were 25,667 dwelling units. Under the new proposal, only 24,928 will be constructed.
In Nauroji Nagar, the National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC), which has been tasked with redevelopment of three colonies, is building a commercial world trade centre, without housing units.
The Ministry, in the affidavit, said there were 20,696 trees in the six colonies, of which 13,975 were to be affected. In the new plan, the number of ‘affected’ trees will be 6,997, which will be translocated.
The Central government’s standing counsel, Ripu Daman Bhardwaj, filed the affidavit on behalf of the Ministry, in the backdrop of the court’s order that it will not allow authorities to go ahead with the central government’s housing projects in south Delhi, unless it shows that the approval and clearance granted were in accordance with law.
A bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice V K Rao had raised the objection after a PIL was filed challenging the Terms Of Reference and Environment Clearances (EC) granted to the housing projects, claiming it would lead to the felling of over 16,500 trees.
Recently, the court had modified its order, which stayed cutting of trees in Delhi, and said it applied only to the six projects.
Submitting the revised plan, the government further stated that there is shortage of government housing and offices. “This has resulted in a long waiting list of officials for government houses. Moreover, houses in these six colonies have outlived their utility…” the Ministry said.