After SC Modifies Master Plan Order, Residents Unsure Whether Concerns Will Be AddressedParas Singh & Mayank Manohar TNN
While allowing the Centre to proceed on amending the Master Plan Delhi 2021, the Supreme Court on Tuesday directed it to invite objections from residents — and though traders welcomed the move, residents said they weren’t too positive about their suggestions being incorporated.
When DDA initially proposed the amendments in February to provide relief from sealing to traders, it sought the public view on it. Over 600 suggestions and objections poured in. But not many were incorporated before the amendments were passed by DDA and forwarded to the Centre. The Supreme Court, however, stayed the process.
DDA had proposed a uniform floor area ratio for both residential and commercial plots. Also, as per the proposals, basements were to be allowed to be used for commercial or professional activities in shop-cum-residential plots as already applicable for mixed use or commercial streets.
Other service professionals like IT professionals, real estate agents, matrimonial services can also use basements for commercial purposes.
Praveen Khandelwal, general secretary of Confederation of All India Traders, said: “We welcome the SC decision. The amendments are well thought out. However, the court also needs to direct the monitoring committee to follow the due process before taking action. The shops that have been sealed should be desealed and charges levied withdrawn.”
Implementing these amendments may not be that easy, though. According to the plan, local bodies must provide parking space for each commercial unit. In case of unavailability of plot, either a common parking space has to be developed in the vicinity of the market, or the market itself has to be marked as falling in the pedestrian-street category.
A senior SDMC official said most local shopping complexes had parking provisions in place and “in case of additional space needs to be provided, the department will identify locations where the facility can be developed”.
The civic agencies also face the onerous task of ensuring that parked vehicles don’t encroach upon the common public area. Identifying land for shared parking space won’t be easy either. Even then, smooth movement of traffic remains in question, say residents.
A north corporation official said they would devise a plan after considering the pros and cons. “In accordance with changes in the plan, we will have to provide parking space for every unit. However, in many markets, due to lack of space, a common parking facility will have to be developed,” the official said. Udai Pratap Singh, DDA vice-chairman, said the authority was yet to receive the order and would initiate action after examining it.
Members of Save the City, a group of RWAs, called the vacation of the stay “negative”. Rejimon C K, member of Dwarka forum, said: “DDA didn’t even respond to the suggestions (sent earlier).There was no explanation to why they were rejected.”