Hyderabad: The Telangana Assembly on Monday passed the Telangana State Building Permission Approval and Self-Certification System (TS-bPASS) Bill, which aims at cutting the red tape in securing building permissions in the state.
Introducing the Bill, municipal administration and urban development minister K. T. Rama Rao said, “Self-certification and deemed approvals make the the TS-bPASS a landmark legislation. No other government in the country has introduced such a policy.”
He claimed that this is a fully automated, completely transparent and citizen-friendly system in which permissions will be issued without any delay.
Explaining the features of the Bill, Rama Rao said people constructing a building on 75 square yards land need not obtain any permission from municipal offices but just register with the urban local body using the TS-bPass.
Citizens constructing houses on more than 75 square yards to 600 square yards of space can seek instant permission through self-certification and start their construction.
In 2015-2016, the state government had introduced the development permission management system (DPMS) in all municipalities, corporations and the Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) area. Under DPMS, the entire process, right from receipt of application to issue of permission including payment of fees was made online with no human intervention.
Though DPMS brought down the time taken for disposal of building permissions considerably and the system allowed applicants to track their file online and created more accountability among officials, Rama Rao said it had no legal sanctity.
Apart from statutory support to the system, he pointed out that the average time taken for issuing building/layout approvals continued to be higher than the prescribed time limit under the DPMS and, moreover, applicants still had to visit different offices to obtain NOCs, often multiple times, resulting in delays.
Taking inspiration from the TS-iPass introduced in July 2015 as a one-stop online system for issuing industrial building permissions based on self-certification, the government felt the need for a similar single window system for building permissions/layout approvals.
Keeping in view the introduction of a single-window system for building and layout permission, the state government has incorporated the relevant provisions into this new law.
Rama Rao explained that the state-level TS-bPASS chasing cell will be established at district, state level and zonal levels within GHMC limits to ensure that all the proposals under the single window system are disposed within 21 days and also coordinate with the line departments for adherence to the timelines.
The minister said that the new Act mandates all municipalities, including the GHMC, to clear all building permission applications within 21 days, failing which the permission is deemed to have been approved.
He said that an automated certificate will be issued to the applicant with the signatures of relevant authorities, including the municipal commissioner, and the town planning officer on behalf of the municipality concerned, to enable them to obtain bank loans or other financial assistance.
He said that occupancy certificates also will be issued within 15 days upon submitting relevant documents.
While making an application for registration or self-certification approval, the applicant will declare that in case of any wrong information or violation of rules, the concerned authorities can demolish the construction without any notice.
He said that the official concerned shall be liable for disciplinary action if there has been delay in issuing the permission and penalty shall be levied wherever applicable.
The state-level central support system will be set up to ensure that every grievance/issue reported was attended to and applicants will be updated via SMS at every stage. Referring to the role of town planning teams, Rama Rao said that it will be minimised with regard to building permissions. They will be henceforth deployed to focus on district urban master planning, road-widening and road development plans, municipal waste management plans, GIS-based planning for civic infrastructure and other future planning-related work....