Castigating the State government for failing to finalise the rules to set up the Metropolitan Planning Committee (MPC), the Karnataka High Court on Friday set a 48-hour deadline, which ends on Monday, for the authorities concerned to submit the same.

Justice Ram Mohan Reddy issued the direction while hearing a petition filed by Jayanagar resident C.N. Kumar challenging the validity of Section 14A of the Karnataka Town and Country Planning (KTCP) Act 1961, which empowers the State to permit use of land for purposes other than that earmarked in the development plan.

Sections 503 A and B, introduced in 1994, in the Karnataka Municipal Corporations (KMC) Act 1976, as mandated by the 74th Amendment to the Constitution, makes it mandatory for the State to transfer the responsibility of city planning to the local governments by mandatorily constituting the MPC. Noting that the rules are yet to be finalised, Justice Reddy observed that it amounts to dereliction of duty by the officials concerned and the State.

Additional Advocate-General H. Kantharaja told the court that the government could not finalise the rules as it has to consider 22 objections received from the public in response to the draft of the Bangalore MPC Rules that was notified on November 7, 2013.

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