Five months after the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) rapped it, the Kochi Corporation has initiated action against Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) violations in Chilavannur.
The corporation has issued notice to 19 builders, which the audit watchdog had listed as having been built in violation of CRZ guidelines. The law allows 15 days for the project proponents to respond to the notice of the local body, civic authorities said.
If the reply furnished by those who have constructed the buildings along the lake is not satisfactory, steps prescribed by the law, including the notice for demolishing the buildings would be issued, said an official.
The CAG had pointed out that 19 buildings were constructed along the banks the Chilavannoor Lake. The violators identified by the Central agency included Galaxy Developers which had constructed four buildings, DLF (5), Heera Constructions, Ambady Retreats, Ambady Retreats (Adukkala Restaurant), Jewel Homes, the car parking of Jewel Homes, a three-storied building by M.A. Yusufali, Rain Tree Realms, Abad Lotus and Blue Lagoon Water Front Enclave.
Incidentally, the High Court of Kerala, which ordered that the buildings of the DLF which were constructed in violation of the CRZ norms be demolished, had come down heavily on the local body for issuing the permits to the realtor.
The court observed that “there had been complete lethargy” on the part of the Kochi Corporation in ascertaining that the builder had obtained proper clearance before it issued the building permit.
The “building permits were issued in violation of the CRZ notification, 1991, and the first respondent (Kochi Corporation) has violated the law of the land by issuing building permits in the CRZ area. Any constructions made in violation of the CRZ notification cannot be regularised,” the judgment said.
The court had also asked the local body to ensure that the all constructions made in violation of the CRZ guidelines are stopped.
Responding to the developments, Mayor Tony Chammany said the local body would issue demolition notice to the builder as ordered by the High Court. The local body would act in accordance with the law and as ordered by the High Court, he said.