Multi-storey buildings come up in Barog’s non-planning area : The Tribune India

Multi-storey buildings come up in Barog’s non-planning area

No authority has power to sanction construction in such areas, court told



Tribune News Service

Ambika Sharma

Solan, January 25

The absence of regulatory control over six-km area lying between Kheel Jhalsi village to Kainthari and Koro villages near Barog has led to the construction of multi-storey buildings ranging from four to nine storeys.

The state government has not only failed to control the haphazard and indiscriminate development activities in the area but the principle of sustainable development and precautionary principle to prevent risk to the humans and environment has not been adhered to.

The state high court pointed this on January 13 while hearing a public interest litigation on haphazard buildings erected near Barog, unmindful of their ecological strata and environmental implications.

No authority is vested with the powers to sanction construction of buildings in the non-planning areas, stated the state government in its reply to the court.

“A building height that does not take into account the slope stability and sub-soil conditions, would be unsafe. Clearing hills and erecting buildings over the slopes have created an extremely vulnerable environment in the state,” pointed the court.

The court, while taking a stern view of this stand, directed the Director, Town and Country Planning (TCP) Department, to prepare regional plans mapping existing land use for regulating constructions. Though the TCP Department is supposed to bring the area under its purview where reckless construction activity is seen, areas like Koro Kainththri and Kheel Jhalsi have been blatantly ignored for the last several years.

The government failed to act even after 14 persons had lost their lives when an eatery collapsed near Kumarhatti in 2019. Though a 13-member committee, which probed the mishap, had recommended a slew of regulatory measures to avert such mishaps, they remained confined to files.

It had advocated the need to monitor the quality of construction in panchayats besides checking constructions along the highways to avoid repeat of such incidents. Citing rules followed in Haryana, it had also recommended restriction on ribbon development, which is the unorganised development taking place in a linear pattern along a road.

Realtors have been exploring the chinks in the system to erect multi-storey buildings outside the planning areas in the precincts of Kasauli. Hotels lacking parking facilities having seven to eight storeys have come up by chopping hundreds of trees and clearing hilly slopes having more than 45% gradient in sensitive areas on the Chabal-Kasauli, Dharampur-Kasauli and Sukki Jori-Sanawar roads.

2019 building collapse case

The government failed to act even after 14 persons had lost their lives when an eatery collapsed near Kumarhatti in 2019. Though a 13-member committee, which probed the mishap, had recommended a slew of regulatory measures to avert such mishaps, they remained confined to files.

Tribune Shorts


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