DELHI: The environment ministry, under pressure from real estate and builder lobbies, and state governments, has limited the ambit of clearances for projects in this sector. Now, local civic authorities will lay down the norms relating to building control and safety in line with the relevant master plan.
The real estate sector has consistently demanded that environmental clearance procedures be simplified and shortened. The urban development ministry too has been advocating single window clearance for real estate and housing projects, arguing that this would help contain escalating housing costs. Given its function as a regulator, the environment ministry had made it clear that it could not be part of a single window clearance system.
However, in response to the overwhelming demands, the environment ministry set up a committee headed by Planning Commission member K Kasturirangan to review the environment clearance process for the sector. The committee recommended that the local authorities decide on the norms, and the environment clearance authorities focus on environmental impact, waste water treatment, air quality and such issues.