J.S. Redhu, Chief Town Planner, Haryana writes:

The news report in your newspaper titled “Behind Haryana land boom, the Midas touch of Hooda” (October 31, 2012) is based on a half-baked analysis of facts. Moreover, the news item has been published without taking the response of the government. The basic data for the news item was picked up from the website of the Department of Town & Country Planning, where all relevant data is transparently made available to the public.

It is unfortunate that the initiatives of the department in encouraging planned development in Medium and Low Potential Towns like Narwana, Dadri, Ratia, Talwandi Rana and Asandh, have been viewed negatively.

The government consciously took a decision to broad-base grant of licences to new players instead of concentrating it in a few hands. Similarly, licensing to Registered Cooperative House Building Societies was banned by the Haryana government in the year 1991 because of its unhappy experience with bodies which defaulted in the implementation of contractual obligations. In September 2008, the government brought out a policy to grant licences to those Cooperative House Building Societies provided they have a collaboration with the colonisers or developers having appropriate financial and technical capabilities.

Licences have been granted to the applicants strictly in accordance with the provisions of the Haryana Development and Regulation of Urban Areas Act, 1975.

There is no discretion whatsoever with any of the authorities. The aggrieved party would not hesitate in approaching the court of law against any decision of the authorities concerned. However, there have been only a few cases where charges of abuse of discretionary authority have been levelled, and there is no case where such charge has been upheld by any court of law.

The article’s comment regarding licensing in Information & Technology also shows a lack of knowledge of the process of licensing.

The licences are granted to the landowners who apply under the Act. Naturally if market forces are not favourable for Information & Technology Projects, there will be fewer applications.

The allegation regarding provision of 40,000 flats and gain of Rs.4,000 crore to the builders is a figment of the imagination. Under the Affordable Housing Policy announced by the government in the year 2009, seven licences were granted in Gurgaon district and one in Palwal district. Out of these, in four cases the licence stands surrendered. In one of the licensed projects granted to DSS Infrastructures Pvt. Ltd. in Sector 67 Gurgaon, a total of 1,203 flats already stand allotted and construction up to the fifth floor stands completed. In another licensed project granted to Prime IT Solutions Pvt. Ltd., the building plans stand approved for provision of 1,079 units.

The allegation regarding grant of licence to Country Wide Promoters Pvt. Ltd. in spite of legal disputes on the land is also factually incorrect. The licence has been granted in favour of the landowner possessing clear title of land through registered sale deed as on date of licence.

Finally, complaints of the individual allottees against BPTP received in this office have been forwarded to BPTP for redress of grievances. Many of these complaints stand redressed by BPTP to the satisfaction of the complainants.

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