NHRC Files Case Against FAR Construction in Delhi Housing Societies

DPS CGHS MC members are carrying out the illegal FAR construction activity with external construction workers and in connivance with construction companies to spread coronavirus at DPS CGHS, Sector 4, Dwarka, New Delhi. Photo: RMN News Service | Click the photo to know the details.
DPS CGHS MC members are carrying out the illegal FAR construction activity with external construction workers and in connivance with construction companies to spread coronavirus at DPS CGHS, Sector 4, Dwarka, New Delhi. Photo: RMN News Service | Click the photo to know the details.

The DDA is supposed to file its reply within 8 weeks, while as a journalist and environmental activist I have filed a complaint in the NHRC court.

By Rakesh Raman

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) of India has filed a case against the floor area ratio (FAR) construction and pollution that is happening in Delhi’s cooperative group housing societies (CGHS).

Since extreme human rights and environment rights violations are being committed during the FAR construction, the NHRC has issued directions to the Chief Secretary of Delhi Government to take action in this case.

Consequently, under NHRC directions, the Home (Police-II) Department of Delhi Government has issued notice dated 27.07.2020 to Vice Chairman, Delhi Development Authority (DDA), regarding illegal FAR construction activities in Delhi’s group housing societies.

The DDA is supposed to file its reply within 8 weeks, while as a journalist and environmental activist I have filed a complaint in the NHRC court.

Letter from Home (Police-II) Department of Delhi Government under NHRC directions to Vice Chairman DDA regarding illegal construction activities in Delhi’s group housing societies.
Letter from Home (Police-II) Department of Delhi Government under NHRC directions to Vice Chairman DDA regarding illegal construction activities in Delhi’s group housing societies.

Recently, I sent a representation to Mr Anurag Jain (IAS), Vice Chairman, DDA, with reference to the NHRC and Home Department notices. I have informed him that FAR construction in Delhi’s occupied cooperative group housing societies (CGHS) is an illegal activity.

Since the construction being allowed by the DDA under the FAR scheme is causing enormous dust and noise pollution, and now there is a greater risk of coronavirus contagion, this construction is depriving people of their fundamental / human rights of living in a clean environment.

In my letter to the DDA Vice Chairman, I have also stated that the cooperative group housing societies, which are mostly run by corrupt managing committee (MC) members, are colluding with dishonest DDA officials to flout the rules specified by the DDA.

In fact, the FAR construction is being carried out by local criminals in housing societies who are supported by corrupt bureaucrats and builders’ mafia, and it has become a citywide criminal racket.

Since FAR construction in group housing societies – where millions of men, women, children, including senior citizens are living – has become a blot on India’s already terrible record on human rights, environment, and corruption, I urged the DDA Vice Chairman to immediately stop FAR construction in Delhi’s cooperative group housing societies.

I have also added in my letter that he (DDA Vice Chairman) should not succumb to any pressure or influence and should take the right decision to save people from this horrific scourge called the FAR construction.

REQUEST FOR ACTION

I have urged the DDA Vice Chairman to take the following action on the case that I have filed with the NHRC.

1. The DDA should advertise in local newspapers and through its website that the ongoing FAR construction in Delhi’s cooperative group housing societies is stopped with immediate effect.

2. The DDA should not give permission for new FAR projects in Delhi’s cooperative group housing societies.

3. The DDA should identify and take action against all those officials – particularly in the DDA Building Department – who have been giving permission for FAR construction even on dubious architectural drawings and then did not stop FAR construction projects that violated the DDA conditions.

4. The DDA should take any other action that will save people from construction and pollution, and thus will protect their fundamental / human rights to live in a clean, pollution-free, disease-free, and peaceful environment.

Although the DDA has informed me that it is working on the case, it has not yet filed its response to the complaint that I had filed with the NHRC.

Additional Case: In a separate case filed to the law-enforcement agencies, I have appealed that criminal cases must be filed against the managing committee (MC) members and corrupt government officials who are allowing FAR construction in housing societies.

The culprit MC members will also have to pay the financial penalties to restore the damaged buildings to their original state. The members who pay money for FAR construction are also responsible for this serious crime as they are participating in the criminal activities of their MCs.

You can download the report that I have written to explain how FAR construction is violating your fundamental / human rights to live in a clean, pollution-free, disease-free, and peaceful environment. The report is also given below in digital format.

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.

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