Illegal construction: Kozhikode Corpn. serves notice on MLA

The Kozhikode Corporation office.  

The Kozhikode Corporation on Friday served notice on Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) legislator K.M. Shaji for the alleged unlawful construction of his house near the civil station in the city.

Official sources said a notice had been served under Section 406 (demolition or alteration of building work unlawfully commenced, carried on or completed) of the Kerala Municipality Act. Mr. Shaji was also served with a provisional order requiring him to show cause within 14 days on the illegal construction and stop all construction activities with immediate effect.

The development comes a day after the Town Planning Department team, during an inspection of the house, found that the total space of construction was 5,500 sq.ft although permission had been granted to construct a house of 3,200 sq. ft.

The house in Vengeri revenue village is under the possession of Asha, Mr. Shaji’s wife, and permission for its construction was granted in 2013.

Taxes not paid

The officials found that the owner had not secured occupancy certificate from the civic authorities. No taxes had been paid as the house had not been allotted a number. However, a temporary electricity connection had been acquired at the time of construction of the house.

The Town Planning Department carried out the inspection based on a directive from the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which is probing a bribery case related to the sanctioning of Plus Two courses for an aided school at Azhikode in Kannur district in 2014.

The case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act was that Plus Two courses were sanctioned to the school after collecting a bribe of ₹25 lakh from the management.

A notice has been served on Mr. Shaji to be present for questioning next month. A report on the inspection would be submitted to the ED on Tuesday.

Officials said that in cases of unauthorised construction without serious violations, the owner would usually be asked to pay a penalty, remit pending taxes and the house regularised. Only in rare cases, prosecution is initiated and demolition carried out.

‘To look into lapses’

Meanwhile, Mayor Thottathil Raveendran said the Corporation would look into lapses if any on the part of Revenue inspectors and tax collectors.

Mr. Shaji, however, has dismissed the matter as frivolous and termed the episode politically motivated.

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Printable version | Nov 28, 2020 12:55:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/illegal-construction-kozhikode-corpn-serves-notice-on-mla/article32933490.ece

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