FAR Construction in Delhi Housing Societies Is a Serious Crime

Deadly dust and noise pollution is caused by FAR construction in occupied cooperative group housing societies of Delhi. Court has now stopped FAR construction, but corrupt DDA officials are still giving FAR approvals.
Deadly dust and noise pollution is caused by FAR construction in occupied cooperative group housing societies of Delhi. Court has now stopped FAR construction, but corrupt DDA officials are still giving FAR approvals.

FAR Construction in Delhi Housing Societies Is a Serious Crime

December 14, 2018

While the corrupt bureaucrats and politicians of Delhi are supporting FAR-based corruption and pollution, the distressed people have no other option but to run away from the city like refugees.

By Rakesh Raman

By now, most people in Delhi have realized that the floor area ratio (FAR) construction in Delhi’s occupied cooperative group housing societies (CGHS) is a major crime.

This crime is being perpetrated by corrupt managing committee (MC) members of housing societies in connivance with builder mafia, dishonest bureaucrats, and autocratic politicians who have formed a citywide crime syndicate to plunder public money.

The total corruption money involved in FAR construction and related building repairs / redevelopment is thousands of crores of rupees. It is not only corruption, but FAR extended construction in Delhi is spreading lethal dust and noise pollution which is causing deadly diseases and deaths among the people including men, women, and children.

Research reports suggest that 80 people die everyday because of pollution in Delhi while dust coming from construction activity is the major cause of pollution. As construction dust includes cement particles, it is more harmful than ordinary dust in the atmosphere.

While construction activity is continuing in localities where people live, it is causing serious, incurable diseases among them. The diseases include irritation in eyes, skin rashes, coughing, sneezing, hayfever, asthma attacks, and amnesia. The dust and noise pollution from construction activity is more harmful to children and senior citizens.

Construction and Pollution

Currently, the air in Delhi has an annual average of 122 µg/m3 of PM2.5* particles [ *PM 2.5 concentrations measured in micrograms of particles per cubic meter of air (µg/m3) ]. That’s 12.2 times of the WHO safe level. This is an extremely dangerous level of pollution and the government is not taking any steps to stop the pollution.

Besides FAR construction, the unruly MC members of housing societies frequently allow massive repairs in occupied houses. Such construction and repairs constantly spread lethal dust and noise pollution for the residents. But the careless government does not take any action.

The pollution problem is so acute in Delhi that the government must not allow even extensive repairs in existing houses. Such repairs should be allowed only in exceptional cases and the house owners must buy a limited-time license (say, one-week license – to complete the repairs work in one week) for such repairs only from the Special Task Force (STF) which has been constituted under the order of the Supreme Court of India.

Besides FAR construction, the unruly MC members of housing societies frequently allow massive repairs in occupied houses to spread lethal dust and noise pollution for the residents.
Besides FAR construction, the unruly MC members of housing societies frequently allow massive repairs in occupied houses to spread lethal dust and noise pollution for the residents.

While the corrupt bureaucrats and politicians of Delhi are supporting FAR-based corruption and pollution, the distressed people have no other option but to leave the city.

It is now being observed that many people are selling their housing society flats in distress and running away from Delhi like refugees or Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). As a result, India is falling in the category of countries with large IDP populations – such as Syria, Colombia, Iraq, Congo, Sudan, Nigeria, and Somalia.

While political and bureaucratic corruption is rampant in Delhi, the main departments responsible for FAR construction, corruption, and pollution are Delhi Development Authority (DDA), Registrar Cooperative Societies (RCS) of Delhi Government, Delhi Fire Service (DFS), and Delhi Urban Art Commission (DUAC).

Criminal Modus Operandi

With their evil desire to start FAR construction in their housing societies, the corrupt MC members suddenly start discussing about it in their General Body Meetings (GBMs) which are held in a fraudulent manner.

As I run “Clean House” social service to report about corruption in housing societies, people approach me from different parts of Delhi to discuss the cases of FAR construction and corruption in their localities.

It is observed that the MC members in these housing societies are secretly supported by a mischievous society member who acts as the mafia kingpin and remains behind the scene – like the top villain of a Hindi film. The MC members work as the street goons under the directions of the hidden boss of the criminal racket.

They together form a gang with a slew of other rogue residents who are generally bribed to support the FAR construction proposals. While this newly formed gang tries to impose their ill-will on other innocent members, the MC members fraudulently hire an unscrupulous architect firm / builder from the construction crime industry for FAR project.

Now, the builder becomes a frontal ganglord for MC members and undertakes all the dirty work including bribing of government officials to take approvals for illegal FAR construction.

In their pursuit to carry out the FAR construction, the MC members become hardened criminals and openly threaten other members who oppose them. Their threats include false police complaints and frivolous legal actions against the members who oppose FAR construction.

It is seen that in many housing societies the ordinary members get so scared that they succumb to the criminal intimidation by the MC members who extort huge money from residents for FAR construction or building repairs.

Since most residents have limited knowledge of law and their rights, they willy-nilly accept FAR construction and pay for it. They fail to understand that even one member in a society can get the FAR construction stopped by taking the right legal approach.

If you want to fully understand the criminality in FAR construction and corruption, you can click here to study the case of DPS CGHS, which is perhaps the most corrupt society in Delhi.

Now, DDA has informed me with multiple letters that it is in the process of reviewing the FAR approval given to DPS CGHS. In its latest letter dated 28.11.2018, the Vigilance Department of DDA has informed me that it has directed the Director (Building) of DDA to investigate the DPS CGHS corruption case.

Crimes and Remedial Actions

Ideally, government bureaucrats – particularly in RCS and DDA offices – are supposed to stop FAR construction and related corruption. But they are so careless and corrupt that they do not take any decision on public complaints and keep waiting for court orders to act. So, in the absence of proper administration in Delhi, you will have to go to the court to seek justice.

However, before you approach any lawyer or the court, you should have sufficient knowledge about your case and your official paperwork should be complete. You will not get good response from the court if you lack knowledge of the FAR construction issue.

In brief, the FAR construction is illegal because it violates Article 21 of the Indian Constitution and breaks a number of other laws such as the Unified Building Bye Laws (UBBL), the Delhi Apartment Ownership Act, Delhi Fire Service Rules, National Building Code, and many other regulations.

Since Article 21 of the Indian Constitution is about the fundamental right of every citizen, its violation is a crime even when the majority of members in a housing society opt for FAR construction. Therefore, the majority argument is invalid and meaningless in this case.

While construction activity is continuing in localities where people live, its pollution is causing deaths and serious, incurable diseases to the people of Delhi.
While construction activity is continuing in localities where people live, its pollution is causing deaths and serious, incurable diseases to the people of Delhi.

Most of the violations in FAR construction are “non-compoundable offences” – which means these are serious crimes. The criminal MC members get their drawings approved from DDA by giving wrong information and false undertakings. Similarly, they get approvals from Delhi Fire Service (DFS) and Delhi Urban Art Commission (DUAC) usually by bribing the officials.

DDA officials are very cunning. They perhaps know that FAR construction is an illegal activity. So, instead of giving a clear approval, they issue a conditional document usually with 26 conditions, stating that “Any deviation done against the bye-laws is liable to be demolished and the supervising Architect, engaged on the job will run the risk of having his license cancelled.

Since huge corruption money is involved in FAR construction projects, the criminal MC members take plenty of risk to break the laws and pursue construction. But the residents / members who pay money for FAR construction also participate in the criminal activity of MC members by aiding and abetting the crime.

After understanding all these issues, you should go to the court. Your case should include charges of cheating, fraud, criminal intimidation, intent to culpable homicide, and attempt to murder against the MC members (by names) so that the criminal MC members could eventually be jailed for these crimes. Depending on your case, you also can report to the police before going to the court.

You can click here to download a comprehensive document that will help you understand the FAR construction issues. This document can also help you make your court case.

In an ongoing case of R. D. Apartments in Dwarka, the Delhi High Court has stopped FAR construction because of its harmful pollution and violation of many other laws. You can check out Case No. W.P.(C) 286/2018 on Delhi High Court website.

Similarly, the members of Chandanwari CGHS, Sector-10, Dwarka have filed a court case against FAR construction in their society. As FAR activity is unlawful, members of many other societies are planning to file their cases in court.

If you want to stop FAR construction in your housing society, you can discuss and attach your application with the court cases of Chandanwari and R. D. Apartments depending on your case and documents.

In order to collect sufficient documents for your case, ideally you should seek information from various departments and the MC of your housing society by filing separate RTI applications besides writing letters with your objections to FAR construction.

In most cases, the MC members of your housing society will refuse to give you RTI information under some flimsy pretext. That is an offence. Their reluctance to give RTI information will go against them in the court. You can click here to read an RTI application that I had filed recently.

Letters to Officials

When you are writing letters to different government departments against FAR construction, you can take signatures of all the dissenting residents in your society for letters related to FAR-based pollution and disturbance. Even non-members and tenants can sign these letters, and all the members of a family can sign the letters. Take maximum number of signatures.

As the following officials are responsible to stop FAR construction and corruption, you should send your letters by name to them. Remember, all these government officials are “public servants” who are not supposed to ignore public complaints. They are not supposed to sit like parasites.

If these officials are not taking appropriate action in a quick and efficient manner to fully resolve your grievances, you must unite and get them removed from their positions.

Their names and addresses are given below.

[ For DDA Letter ]

Mr. Tarun Kapoor, IAS
Vice Chairman
Delhi Development Authority (DDA)
Vikas Sadan
New Delhi 110 023

Copy:

1. Director (Building)
Delhi Development Authority (DDA)
Vikas Sadan
New Delhi 110 023

2. Mr. Anil Baijal
Lt. Governor of Delhi
6, Raj Niwas Marg, Civil Lines
New Delhi 110 054

3. Mr. Hardeep Singh Puri
Minister of State for Housing & Urban Affairs
Nirman Bhawan, Maulana Azad Road
New Delhi 110 011

[ For RCS Letter ]

Dr. Jayadev Sarangi, IAS
Secretary (Cooperation)
Office of the Registrar Cooperative Societies (RCS)
Old Court Building, Parliament Street
New Delhi 110 001

Copy:

Mr. Virendra Kumar , IAS
Registrar Cooperative Societies (RCS)
Old Court Building, Parliament Street
New Delhi 110 001

[ For Delhi Fire Service ]

Mr. Atul Garg
Chief Fire Officer
Delhi Fire Service (Head Office)
New Barakhamba Road, Connaught Lane
Barakhamba
New Delhi 110 001

Copy:

Director, Delhi Fire Service
Delhi Fire Service (Head Office)
New Barakhamba Road, Connaught Lane
Barakhamba
New Delhi 110 001

[ For Delhi Urban Art Commission  ]

Mr. Vinod Kumar
Secretary
Delhi Urban Art Commission (DUAC)
Core-6A, UG & First Floor
India Habitat Centre
Lodhi Road
New Delhi 110 003

You should also write separate letters to the MLAs and MPs of your area for getting the FAR construction stopped. If they do not respond positively, then do not vote for them and dethrone them from their seats.

If you need further help, you can always contact me at my address given below.

By Rakesh Raman, who is a national award-winning journalist and social activist. He is the founder of a humanitarian organization RMN Foundation which is working in diverse areas to help the disadvantaged and distressed people in the society.

About Me

Rakesh Raman
Rakesh Raman

I am a government’s National award-winning journalist and social activist. Besides working at senior editorial positions with India’s leading media companies, I had been writing an edit-page column for The Financial Express, a business newspaper of the Indian Express group.

Nowadays, for the past about 7 years, I have been running my own global news services on different subjects. I also have formed an environment-protection group called Green Group in Delhi.

I am also running an exclusive community-driven online editorial section under the banner “Clean House” to help the suffering residents of Delhi raise their voice against the growing corruption and injustice particularly in group housing societies where millions of people live. I edit The Integrity Bulletin newsletter which covers corruption issues in India and abroad.

I have created a comprehensive online information service to educate the Indian voters for the upcoming Lok Sabha election scheduled to happen in 2019.

I have formed a free Education and Career Counselling Center for deserving children at a poor J.J. Colony in Dwarka, New Delhi under my NGO – RMN Foundation.

Earlier, I had been associated with the United Nations (UN) through United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) as a digital media expert to help businesses use technology for brand marketing and business development.

Contact

Rakesh Raman
463, DPS Apts., Plot No. 16, Sector 4
Dwarka, Phase I, New Delhi 110 078, India
Contact by email.

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