Himachal Pradesh Governor gives his nod to Town and Country Planning Bill
SHIMLA: Himachal Pradesh Governor Acharya Dev Vrat finally gave his consent to the Town and Country Planning (Amendment) Bill, 2016 that would pave way for the regularization of around 30,000 unauthorized structures across the state. Buildings would be regularized only on producing structural safety certificate.
Himachal Pradesh Assembly on August 27, 2016 had passed the bill to give people a chance to regularize their buildings. While tabling the bill, Urban Development Minister Sudhir Sharma had said that no unsafe building would be regularized in the state.
After passing it in the assembly, the bill was sent to the Governor for his consent but he took time to decide and this uncertainty over the bill had left the Congress government on the edge.
In October last year, Sudhir Sharma along-with senior officers of department had met Acharya Dev Vrat while in November last year, Leader of Opposition Prem Kumar Dhumal, too, had submitted a memorandum to the Governor requesting him for early approval to the bill.
Right before the start of winter session of state Assembly in December last year, Sudhir Sharma on December 15 had written a three page letter to Governor. In the letter, the minister stated that uncertainty over the pending Bill is encouraging violators and the department is not in a position to check this. He requested Governor either to approve, reject or return the bill with his suggestions.
In the beginning of this month, the Governor had sought some clarification including structural stability of buildings, action against the officials who failed to check illegal construction all these years and whether amendment in the bill is contradictory to the high court order.
Recently, state government had submitted its detailed reply on the clarification to Governor making it clear that buildings would not be regularized without structural safety certificate. Sources said that satisfied with the reply, Governor has finally approved the bill.