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Thursday, January 27, 2022

Govt revokes clearance granted to Old Goa bungalow

The Town and Country Planning (TCP) Department issued the revocation order, taking back technical clearance granted on October 18, 2016 to Jose Maria de Gouveia de Pinto, erstwhile owner of the land.

By: Express News Service | Panaji |
December 1, 2021 3:23:40 am
The ground-plus-one structure with a tiled roof stands between the Mandovi River on one side, the St Cajetan Church on the other and is a stone’s throw away from the Viceroy’s Arch in Old Goa’s heritage precinct. (Express Photo by Mayura Janwalkar)

As the fast by protesters demanding demolition of an allegedly illegal bungalow constructed in Old Goa heritage precinct entered its seventh day, Goa Deputy Chief Minister and Town and Country Planning Minister Chandrakant Kavlekar on Tuesday withdrew permission granted to the structure.

The Town and Country Planning (TCP) Department issued the revocation order, taking back technical clearance granted on October 18, 2016 to Jose Maria de Gouveia de Pinto, erstwhile owner of the land. The order stated that construction on the plot in Ella village be stopped.

On Tuesday, the village panchayat of Se Old Goa issued a stop-work order. Panchayat members visited the site and pasted a copy of the order on the gate.

Minister Kavlekar said: “The NOC (no-objection certificate) was granted for repair but they have clearly carried out reconstruction. The TCP had granted a conditional technical clearance in 2016…. They have built a ground-plus-one structure, which is (in) total violation. They had committed fraud even at the time of seeking NOC. Permissions were sought in the name of one person but the property was in the name of another.” He said the property was in the name of Suvarna Lotlikar and Manish Munot even then, “but has come to our notice now”.

The technical clearance was sought in the name of Pinto, the erstwhile owner, who sold 2400 sq m of the land to Survarna Lotlikar, wife of former Goa Forward Party treasurer Suraj Lotlikar, and 9,500 sq m to Manish Munot, husband of BJP spokesperson Shaina NC.

Munot and Shaina had earlier said they had no part to play in the construction. Munot had also said he pulled out of the project. Goa Forward Party chief Vijai Sardesai had said Lotlikar was removed from party post as soon as this issue was brought to his notice.

The revocation order issued to Pinto by Deputy Town Planner S P Surlakar stated, “Due to the fact that the property under reference was already sold by you at the time of applying for Technical Clearance, it is quite clear that you could not have obtained the permission in your name and which implies you have obtained the said permission fraudulently and by misrepresentation of fact…”

The order stated that applications made by Lotlikar and Munot on August 24, for registering a sale deed of their respective plots, revealed that at the time of granting NOC — in 2016 — the property was under their name. The revocation order read, “…therefore you were no longer the owner of the property… at the time of grant of technical clearance order dated October 18, 2016”.

Village panchayat member Vishal Volvoikar said the panchayat had served a stop-work order and resolved to issue a notice to show cause why licence granted for reconstruction should not be revoked for violation of permissions granted by the Goa Coastal Zone Management Authority on December 28, 2015 and the ASI on February 3, 2020.

The stop-work order was issued to Pinto, former owner of the two plots on which the structure stands, Lotlikar, and Sumerlal Jain of Corus Urban Infrastructure, a Mumbai-based real estate company that has now bought the property. Volvoikar said notices were issued to all since the panchayat had received a sale deed showing that the land had been sold to the real estate company.

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