SC expresses serious concern over illegal constructions

SC expresses serious concern over illegal constructions

The Supreme Court on Friday expressed its serious concern over unauthorised buildings being given occupancy certificates by the authorities, resulting in incidents of such structures collapsing and catching fire, taking its toll on people's lives.

“We are making a mockery of rule of law. People have died due to the collapse of these buildings. There are 100s of such unauthorised buildings. How long can this go on? In how many cities, this is happening,” a bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta asked Additional Solicitor General A N S Nadkarni.

The law officer said there is a large-scale corruption in municipal authorities, which turn a blind eye to these illegal constructions.

“A man spends about Rs 40 lakh for a flat. In Maharashtra, we have recently seen a building, without occupancy certificates, caught fire and people died,” the bench said.

The court cited the fire incident in a posh Mumbai high-rise that claimed four lives, Bawana factory in Delhi and the Kamala Mills also in Mumbai. It said unregulated constructions were being rampantly carried out with the hope that someday such buildings will be regularised.

“What is the government doing if there is so much corruption. Tell us what steps are being taken by it. If we take certain action, you say it is judicial activism,” the bench said.

On this, law officer said there should be directions to the high courts to look into it.

“Should we say it is none of our concern,” the bench further asked.

Senior advocate Ranjit Kumar, acting as amicus curiae in the matter related to illegal constructions in Delhi, pointed towards the recent incident of a building collapsing in Shahberi village of Greater Noida in Uttar Pradesh wherein over half a dozen people were killed.

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