If CCTV units are not installed within the time limit, the trade or business licence issued to the owner or occupier of the building may be cancelled or suspended, writes R.Rajaram.

As a measure to control crime, the State government has made installation of closed circuit television (CCTV) units mandatory in all public buildings, commercial establishments, and places where public congregate in large numbers.

As per the Tamil Nadu Urban Local Bodies (Installation of Closed Circuit Television Units in Public Buildings) Rules, 2012, CCTV units should be installed in every public building by the owner or occupier of that building falling within the territorial area of an urban local body – Corporation, Municipality, and Town Panchayat.

Copies of the order have been circulated among others to the Commissioner of Municipal Administration, Commissioner of Town and Country Planning, Director of Town Panchayats, Director General of Police, and all District Collectors besides to the Housing and Urban Development Department as well.

Public building, according to the new rule which came into force on December 14, 2012, denotes any building where public have an access for any purpose.

The rules apply to schools, colleges, universities, or other similar educational institutions including private ones, hostels where more than 100 persons reside, hospitals, nursing homes, dispensaries, clinics, maternity centres having a floor area of 500 square metre and above, star hotels, boarding and lodging houses, marriage halls, cinema theatres, amusement parks, recreation centres, bars, assembly halls, auditoriums, museums, markets for display and sale of merchandise, shops or stores either wholesale or retail having a floor area of 500 square metre and above, banks, ATM counters, insurance companies, jewellery shops, shopping malls, cinema theatres, petrol filling stations, bus stations, places of religious worship and places of religious, political or social congregation where more than 500 persons assemble at a time, industries where more than 100 persons are employed, institutions of IT services, radio broadcasting and television stations, offices of central government or any State government or any local authority or any corporate owned body or controlled by Central or State government where over 100 persons are employed or having a floor area of 500 square metre and above, office of any quasi-governmental organisation or any government undertaking controlled by Central or State government where more than 100 persons are employed or having a floor area of 500 square metre and above, libraries, public concert rooms, clubs having a floor area of 500 square metre and above and bus stations or terminals.

The CCTV units should be installed at vantage points such as entry and exit points, corridors and reception areas. It should be installed in all existing public buildings within a period of six months from the date of the rules coming into force.

If the CCTV units are not installed within the time limit, the regular type trade or business licence issued by the competent authority under relevant statutes to the owner or occupier of that building may at any time be cancelled or suspended, it goes on to state further.

The Corporation Commissioner and the Executive Authority of the municipality and town panchayat have been directed to ensure that the CCTV units were installed in the public buildings in the manner as prescribed in sub rules (2) and (3).

According to the rules, every person intending to construct or reconstruct a public building should make necessary provision in the building plan for the installation of CCTV units while applying to the urban local body concerned seeking permission for execution of work.

The Commissioner or the Executive Authority of the urban local body have been asked to ensure that necessary provision were made in the building plan for installation of CCTV units before according permission for construction of new public building or its reconstruction.

They have also been directed to ensure that the CCTV units were properly installed upon receiving the intimation of completion of construction.

Police sources say the government order has been communicated to field level city police officers, instructing them to advise the owners or occupiers of public buildings to install CCTV units.