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Civic bodies say it is tough to stop construction in unauthorised colonies in Delhi

The Supreme Court had stayed any construction activity that is not in confirmation with building bye-laws in the city's 1,797 unauthorised colonies, on Tuesday.

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Civic bodies say it is tough to stop construction in unauthorised colonies in Delhi
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The three municipal corporations in the city -- North, South and East --- say stopping illegal construction in unauthoursied colonies is tough as the locals and law-enforcement agencies do not support the sealing or demolition activity.

The Supreme Court had stayed any construction activity that is not in confirmation with building bye-laws in the city's 1,797 unauthorised colonies, on Tuesday. The corporations are, however, waiting for the detailed order.

According to officials, enforcement of the same lies with different agencies including Delhi government's Revenue and Urban Development departments where these colonies have come up on agricultural land.

While there has been rampant illegal construction clustered in East Delhi, which houses the most number of unauthourised colonies in areas such as Laxmi Nagar, Pandav Nagar, Ganesh Nagar and Vinod Nagar, among others, none of the agencies have been able to stop it so far.

"Taking action against unauthorised constructions has been a routine activity. However, we are waiting for the detailed court order to understand our role in the directions given," said East MCD commissioner Ranbir Singh.

Officials, not wishing to be named, said, while the civic body does issue notices to such constructions, serious action cannot be taken most of the time because of a strong builder-police nexus.

"Many times when MCD officials visit the site for demolition, locals get violent and scare them out. These houses with adjoining walls in narrow lanes are ticking bombs. The plot size is, too, small while the height of the building which, as per rules must not be more than two-three floors rather has four to six storeys, which is a violation of building rules as per the Delhi Master Plan 2021," said an official, on the condition of anonymity.

The Supreme Court order makes it clear that these houses cannot have more than three floors. Also, it stated that sanctioned building plans will be required while no changes can be made to the structure later on without an approval.

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