Delhi BJP president Vijender Gupta said there were still many legal hurdles to be overcome in the way of regularisation of 917 unauthorised colonies

The Delhi unit leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday spoke in different voices on the issue of regularisation of unauthorised colonies as its leaders appeared literally stumped by the googly of regularisation of 917 unauthorised colonies bowled by Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit.

Delhi BJP president Vijender Gupta said there were still many legal hurdles to be overcome in the way of regularisation of 917 unauthorised colonies as was announced by the Chief Minister.

He questioned if this was just another political gimmick in view of the 2013 Delhi Assembly polls, and something similar to the issue of provisional regularisation certificates before the 2008 Assembly elections.

Mr. Gupta said before the last Assembly elections, Ms. Dikshit had announced that 1639 unauthorised colonies would be regularised and provisional certificates were distributed to 1,218 of them. However, he said, not a single colony could be regularised till date.

With the Government now announcing its decision to regularise 917 colonies, Mr. Gupta – who was earlier insisting that such a step would not be possible – wondered what their future would be.

The BJP leader asked if the regularisation would mean that the layout plans of the vacant plots of these 917 unauthorised colonies would also be approved now; if residents in these colonies would be able to avail of loans from bank and financial institutions; and if common facilities such as parks, community centres and post-offices would become available there.

The Delhi Government’s decision, however, took the BJP by surprise. The move can have a major consequence on the outcome of the 2013 Assembly elections as about 40 lakh people reside in these 917 unauthorised colonies.

The desperation of the BJP in countering this Congress offensive was also visible in the reactions of some of its senior leaders.

Both Leader of Opposition in Delhi Assembly V. K. Malhotra and his predecessor and former Delhi Minister Jagdish Mukhi demanded to know if it was a genuine regularisation of the colonies then why were only around 900 colonies being regularised when provisional registration certificates were issued to more than 1,600 colonies. However, it is a matter of record that provisional certificates were only issued to 1,218 colonies. As per Ms. Dikshit, Delhi Government would be taking a decision on the remaining 300 colonies that had come up on Government land within a week.

Prof. Mukhi also asked the Government whether the maps for the construction of houses would be passed from Wednesday. Incidentally, as a legislator said, many of the 917 colonies have almost complete built-up area and construction here was thus far been carried out after bribing Delhi Police, Revenue Department and Municipal Corporation employees.

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