Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, December 12
Defeating the very purpose of regularising illegal colonies under an open-ended policy notified in October last year by the Housing and Urban Development Department, the Revenue Department has now done away with the condition of no objection certificate (NOC) while registering property in residential and commercial colonies.
A senior government functionary said the decision had been taken to end harassment of hundreds of end users in colonies at the hands of revenue officials and falling stamp duty collection. However, the decision could encourage sprouting of more illegal colonies as the government had been repeatedly extending the deadline for the 2018 policy, he said.
In directions issued to registrar and sub-registrars on Thursday, the Special Secretary (Revenue) has stated that on the basis of legal advice taken from Law and Legislative Department, it is clarified that the Punjab Apartment and Property Regulation Act, 1995 – an amendment to the Act puts restrictions on the registration of properties in illegal colonies, has no binding on registration of the property regulated by the Registration Act, 1908.
Revenue Minister Gurpreet Kangar did not respond to calls. Incidentally, a former Financial Commissioner (revenue), with a view to harmonise different Acts of the state government and check mushrooming of illegal colonies, had issued instructions in 2018 to all Deputy Commissioners, sub-registrars and joint sub-registrars of properties have been directed not to register sale and transfer deeds of properties in any colony without the NOC issued by the “competent authority in the housing department”.
But later, the government withdrew the condition of the NOC for people buying property in legal colonies/urban settlements. However, the issue of NOC for plots in illegal colonies still continued.
Official figures reveal that of 7,000 illegal colonies, PUDA has listed approximately 4,500 colonies, while the remaining are located in areas under the jurisdiction of the local government.
Gurvinder Singh Lamba, general secretary, Punjab Colonisers’ and Property Dealers’ Association, said the instructions on registration of property without NOC issued by the Revenue Department would help those owning plots on undivided land in legal colonies, the Damocles’ sword of the provisions of the PAPRA Act hanged on the colonisers and property owners.
In case of individual plot-holders in illegal colonies, the demand for issuing NOC on the basis of valid payment receipts as registration of such properties has not been accepted by the housing department.
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