Measures to check unauthorised constructions
In an effort to check unauthorised constructions in the city, the Coimbatore District Collector has urged the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (Tangedco) to provide electricity connection to a new multi-storeyed building only if it has the plan approval.
Following the fire last month at Vigneshvar Cresta on Avanashi Road, the District Administration, the Coimbatore Local Planning Authority (LPA) and the Coimbatore Corporation had sealed more than 50 unauthorised constructions in the city.
In a communication to the superintending engineers of Tangedco here recently, the Collector pointed out that the fire accident at Vigneshvar Cresta killed four women and injured two more. Though the building did not have permission for the second and third floors, these had power connection. He urged Tangedco to ensure that applications for power supply connection to multi-storeyed buildings (residential and commercial) had the necessary approvals and met the norms specified in the application. In the case of new buildings that were not meeting these norms, the power supply should not be provided, he said.
An official of Tangedco said that power supply for buildings with ground plus three floors was provided only if the application for electricity connection was submitted with the required approvals. “We ask for all details such as approval for elevator,” the official said. A couple of years ago, the Tangedco had even stopped giving power supply connections to buildings without approvals for nine months.
“We do have a responsibility and we are not violating the norms,” the official said. Temporary connection was provided if the approval document was submitted with the application and for permanent connection, the property tax receipt was asked for. In the case of extension of an existing building, the official concerned should ask for reasons for the extension. But, tax assessment should not be carried out for buildings without approval or those that have deviated, the official said.
K. Kathirmathiyon, secretary of Coimbatore Consumer Cause, says that if electricity connection was not available then investors and developers would not construct buildings without permission. Even for temporary connection, the Tangedco should insist on plan approval.
An official of the Local Planning Authority (LPA) said the local body should give the completion certificate for a building, after verifying the structure for violations and deviations. The Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority had a system to verify violations and deviations.