Nation Current Affairs 29 Aug 2017 Illegal construction ...

Illegal constructions are ubiquitous sight in AP

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | NALLA RAM
Published Aug 29, 2017, 6:58 am IST
Updated Aug 29, 2017, 6:59 am IST
The urban local bodies of Andhra Pradesh have received 74,000 applications under the BPS.
Urban local bodies seem to have turned a blind eye to illegal constructions in the state. In some areas, local politicians are responsible for illegal constructions.  (Representational image)
 Urban local bodies seem to have turned a blind eye to illegal constructions in the state. In some areas, local politicians are responsible for illegal constructions. (Representational image)

Visakhapatnam: The number of unauthorised constructions in cities like Vizag, Vijayawada and Tirupati is on the rise. Over 74,000 applications have been received from owners of illegal flats, houses and commercial complexes in Andhra Pradesh under the Building Penalisation Scheme (BPS) over the past few years.

Urban local bodies seem to have turned a blind eye to illegal constructions in the state. In some areas, local politicians are responsible for illegal constructions. Illegal layouts in urban and semi-urban areas have also become a cause for worry. Illegal buildings with unauthorised layouts have come up in several cities.

 

The urban local bodies of Andhra Pradesh have received 74,000 applications under the BPS. Of these, over 36,000 are for individual houses, 22,000 are for multi-storeyed residential complexes and 7,000 for commercial establishments. A senior officer, on condition of anonymity, said that a majority of the unauthorised constructions are located in Vijayawada, Guntur, Vizag, Tirupati and Kurnool. The government has collected over Rs 650 crore under the BPS so far, with 18,000 applications pending.

GVMC Commissioner M. Harinarayan says, “We will cross check the list of buildings and houses and initiate action against the violators.”

 

A senior officer from the Town Planning Wing, on condition of anonymity, says that one builder has constructed a three-storeyed building in the Akkayyapalem area of Vizag city by forging land documents. 

“The builder has made an application under the BPS to regularise the building but we have rejected his application,” he says, adding that builders have been trying to use the BPS to regularise their unauthorised constructions, but the authorities are ensuring that they reject such applications. “We will seek legal opinion on the further course of action,” he says.

 

ACB raids expose official-builder link

The raids conducted recently by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) on commercial complexes illegally being constructed in the Gajuwaka area of Vizag city have exposed the existence of a nexus between officials of Town Planning Wing of the GVMC and errant builders.

Two of the three-storeyed commercial buildings that are under construction belong to henchmen of local politicians. Both buildings are coming up without their plans having been approved by the Town Planning Wing of the GVMC and without the requisite permissions. The construction of the unauthorised buildings began in March 2016. 

 

K. Ramakrishna Prasad, the DSP of the ACB (Visakha Urban), says that even though the GVMC has rejected the plans of both the buildings, they are being constructed illegally. He says that officials of GVMC are aware of the illegal constructions but have failed to take any action against the errantbuilders.

“We suspect that some GVMC officials may be playing a role in the development of illegal constructions in the city. We will prepare a report and initiate action against them,” he says.

Sources reveal that the GVMC chief has been chalking out plans to have officials of the Town Planning Wing reshuffled to check their corrupt practices in light of the criticism being received from various groups regarding their acceptance of bribes for the approval of building plans.

 

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