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Chandigarh Housing Board replies to finance dept: Let benefit stay

There are nearly 64,000 CHB dwelling units spread across 15 sectors in the city, including sectors 38 (West), 29, 41 40, 44, 43, 45,47 and Modern Housing Complex.

Written by Vinod Kumar | Chandigarh |
Updated: August 11, 2016 6:16:07 am
File photo of Chandigarh Housing board. Express file photo File photo of Chandigarh Housing board. Express file photo

UNCERTAINTY LOOMS over the relief given by Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) to dwelling units allowing additions and alternations as per standard designs, as the board and UT finance department continue to differ over the issue. After being asked by the finance department to withdraw its order, the CHB has written back to the finance department defending its decision. The board has also urged the department not to withdraw the order giving relief to the owners of flats.

There are nearly 64,000 CHB dwelling units spread across 15 sectors in the city, including sectors 38 (West), 29, 41 40, 44, 43, 45,47 and Modern Housing Complex. The CHB, in its order dated February 18, had allowed dwelling units to make need based changes as per standard designs. However, a large number of owners had already made alternations that were not in accordance with the standard designs. To give the residents relief, the board passed an order on June 10 allowing the owners to submit their plans to the board for approval of the alternation additions subjected to conditions such as structural stability, ground coverage not exceeding 70 per cent, floor area ratio (FAR) 2 and conforming to all the applicable byelaws.

On July 1, the finance department wrote to the board asking to withdraw the said order as the parameters such as zoning, FAR, ground coverage, architectural control are in the preview of UT administration, which is further bound by the parameters laid down in the Chandigarh Master Plan 2031.

The board has justified its decision on grounds that the Chandigarh Administration had issued a notification on October 16, 2008 allowing FAR of 2 with a ground coverage of 70 per cent for marla house of less than one kanal.

The board has contended that most of the CHB dwelling units are of economically weaker section (EWS) and low income group (LIG) categories where the requirements of an even higher ground coverage of 75 per cent is justified.

The board has requested the finance department that it may not be asked to withdraw order dated June 10 as the same was issued keeping in view the overall public interest. The issue will be taken up in the board meeting scheduled to be held on August 12. Prem Kaushik, member of the board, said that the board took the decision for the benefit of the residents. “We will discuss the matter in the board meeting. For benefit of resident, we can sit with the officials of the administration for resolving the issue,” said Kaushik.

Some of the relaxations given by the board to the allotted in the past few months have come under scanner of Chandigarh administration. The board faced objections from chief architect Kapil Setia for order dated July 27 allowing installing of grills in balconies/verandahs for the purpose of safety and security in all the flats. The board had also allowed the allottees of high income group (HIG) flats in Sector 45 to cover the corridor area adjoining their respective units.

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