DELHI: In less than a week after Delhi chief minister’s claim that she won’t allow Delhi to grow vertically till she is alive, she and the union urban development minister seemed to be on the same page on the issue of allowing highrises in the national capital. However, the CM insisted that green and open places of Delhi must be maintained.
The two leaders said vertical growth is an option in areas where there is “scope”. The union urban development minister stated this on July 1 in CM’s presence on the sidelines of NCR Planning Board meeting.
The union urban development minister said Delhi can’t expand horizontally and hence vertical growth has to happen. But he cleared the air saying such development can happen in new areas where there is space and opportunity for such growth. “My opinion is clear, I have said. Where we are sitting on July 2, there can be no highrise here. But where there is new development, Delhi cannot expand, it has Haryana one side and Uttar Pradesh on another. So the increasing population and the 40 lakh people who live in slums and unauthorized colonies. What is the solution? The land is expensive. So where, it is possible, there should be high rises, in the new areas.”
Since the minister took charge of the urban development ministry, he has been pushing for high rise real esate development in areas including outer Delhi. He has also expedited the process of finalizing land pooling policy, which will pave way for such development. He said that he does not suggest having vertical growth in the old areas, where they cannot take burden of high rise buildings.
Responding to queries on the minister’s suggestion the CM said, “What he has said is correct. Our purpose is also that whatever happens, the present picture of Delhi, which is green and has open spaces, has to be maintained.” In the past, the minister has said that the only way forward for Delhi was vertical while the CM has opposed the construction of highrises.
The minister has said the only way forward for Delhi was vertical while the CM has opposed the construction of highrise buildings.