Housing plan for Corpn officers whips up storm

Councillors oppose choice of park for building flats

 South Delhi Municipal Corporation’s plans to provide a posh residential address to commissioner and other senior officials in south Delhi has courted controversy. The green land on which the civic body plans to construct the residential quarters is in the eye of the storm.

The local councillors are opposing the decision of the civic body claiming that land, measuring 11,500 square metres, is the only available park in the area, and ‘it is the only place where the residents could organise social and religious functions such marriage, Durga Puja and Diwali Mela’.

Bringing up the matter in the House meeting of the corporation on Friday, CR Park councillor Virender Kasana said the BJP ruled South Corporation must avoid ‘grabbing land’ from the residents.

“The resident welfare associations of the area have opposed the move as the designated space is the only vacant land in the locality. Moreover, the civic body should at least have taken the residents into confidence before planning such a project,” said Kasana.

He also criticised the ruling party for passing the plan for building a residential quarter under “redevelopment of existing MCD flats” of the area as there is no such structure at present.

“You can redevelop an area only when you had developed it in the past. Since it was always an open ground, how can one use the word redevelopment?” Kasana said.
He said the officer’s housing scheme can only be implemented when the land use is changed on the space.

The project to build the residential quarter was first announced by South Delhi Municipal Commissioner in his budget in December last year. It was then passed by the standing committee as well as the House of the corporation.

Reacting to the charges in the meeting, leader of the House Subhash Arya said he was not aware of the situation.

He also dismissed the allegations of land grabbing ‘as the land belonged to the corporation’.

He ordered an inquiry into the issue and asked for a status report within a month’s time.
Kasana said he has written to Delhi Lieutenant Governor Tejendra Khanna seeking his intervention in the matter.

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