Plaints flood BMTF, but it can't act against pvt builders

Plaints flood BMTF, but it can't act against pvt builders

It’s not just the BBMP, the Bangalore Metropolitan Task Force (BMTF) too is flooded with complaints from public on building byelaws violations and unauthorised constructions.

Between January and October, 2013, a total of 679 complaints were posted on the BMTF website, out of which more than 600 were about byelaw violations alone. The rest pertained to encroachment of footpaths, stormwater drains (SWDs) and roads, unauthorised construction of flats among others. Similarly, 64 complaints were registered about unauthorised constructions and building byelaw violations in the first three months of 2014. The BMTF officials said that the number is growing each passing day.

A senior official from BMTF said, “We cannot take action against private builders and presently, we are looking only at government properties that have violated building byelaws. However, violations within the Palike limits are rampant. The present BBMP Building Byelaws 2003 need to be amended and made more effective, immediately.”

BBMP officials said that they had registered 99 complaints till date related to bylaw violations this year. “Most of the complaints are from East zone (38) followed by Mahadevapura zone, South zone and West zone. Out of the 99 complaints, 38 are closed. The complainants post pictures online and sometimes call up the control room to register complaints,” said a staffer at the Palike Grievance Cell.

S Umesh, president of the Bangalore 5-Year Course Advocates Association, said that the main culprits were the religious institutions, hospitals, land sharks and apartments.

He said, “Every month, the Palike submits a report on encroachment of SWDs as well as on builders violating byelaws, to the High Court. While they submit the report, no action is taken by them. The violations are rampant, especially at Electronics city, HSR Layout, Mahadevapura, Kengeri, Bannerghatta Road and Tumakuru Road.”

Nagaraj Reddy of the Confederation of Real Estate Developers Associations of India (CREDAI), Karnataka, disagreed. He said it was the builders owning smaller sites who are violating byelaws. He said, “Big builders do not get occupancy certificate (OC) and commencement certificate (CC) if they violate the rules. If the Palike does not issue OC, automatically our khatas get cancelled. Hence, most of them follow the rules. The byelaws are strong and there is no need for any amendments.”
Reddy, however, said purchasers must be careful while buying properties and check whether the owner has OC, khata and CC.

The BBMP building byelaws are in effect from June 5, 2004. As per the byelaws, buildings with four or more floors above the ground floor are highrises. A builder needs to apply for OC on completion of the building from the BBMP/BDA. The OC is issued within 30 days to the builder if the structure has been built following all norms and as per the sanctioned plan. However, it is illegal for the builder to hand over the flats to buyers without receiving the OC.

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