HC Seeks Date For Srinagar Master Plan Notification In 3 Weeks

SRINAGAR — The J&K High court on Monday directed state government to finalize Master Plan (2017-2035) for Srinagar with utmost ‘urgency’ and inform it about the date of its notification within three weeks.

While hearing of the public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a lawyer, advocate Mujeeb Andrabi in 2013, started, a division bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Alok Aradhe asked additional advocate general the exact date when the master plan will be notified. Without giving the exact date, the AAG assured the court that the Master Plan was in final stage of its approval.

He said that a review meeting in this regard took place in the beginning of the present month with the Governor of the State.

Court directed the AAG to place the outcome of review meeting before it within three weeks.

The Public Interest Litigation was filed by advocate Mujeeb Andrabi, seeking among other directions to clear Srinagar city of illegal constructions.

The legislation, providing moratorium on sealing of illegal constructions till December 2015 was passed in both Houses of the legislature during NC-Congress government. Later PDP-BJP government also followed the suite.

The Government then constituted a high power committee of experts to go into the issue of illegal constructions and suggest remedial measures.

In the draft policy, the panel had reportedly recommended only those illegal constructions that have come up before March 5, 2014 will be considered for one time settlement by way of imposing hefty penalty while as no unauthorized construction having come up after March 5, 2014 will be regularized. In case of major violations having taken place before March 5, 2014, no leniency has been proposed in the policy.

The exercise to formulate policy was started on the directions of the High Court, which had also issued directions for sealing of illegal/unauthorized constructions.

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