BHUBANESWAR: The state government has swung into damage control mode after Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) recently pointed out gross irregularities in land allotment in the city. It has decided to recover money from the allotees, who got land at concession without justification, and verify all discretionary quota allotments made between 1983 and 1999.
A high-level meeting, chaired by housing and urban development secretary Injeti Srinivas, decided to start the process of cancelling irregular allotments, at the earliest. The Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) will file a caveat in the Orissa high court and serve showcause on the allottees. "All irregularities pointed out by the CAG are being examined," Srinivas told TOI on Friday.
According to the decision taken by the government, the BDA will examine the irregularities in land allocation to SOA University at Kalinga Nagar and demand benchmark price from the university. If it fails to pay, the land allotment will be cancelled. The CAG had pointed out that SOA did not use the land for the purpose for which it was allotted. It had taken 15 acre in September, 2006 for a medical, dental and nursing college, but it also runs a Plus II college and a law institute there without authorization. The CAG also pointed out that the government had allotted six acre in July, 2008 and 4.6 acre in May, 2009 to the university in a piecemeal manner without following any standard procedure.
On discretionary quota, the government has decided to verify all allotments of plots, houses and apartments before 1999. The BDA will also take action against people who sold property secured through the quota and availed the benefit for a second time.
The report had also lambasted the government for arbitrary and discriminatory allotment of land under the quota to sportspersons. Categories of sportspersons, their achievements and quantum of land to be allotted were not spelled out.
To address the irregularities in planning, the government has decided to collect compounding fees under Amnesty Scheme within one month. If the building owners fail to deposit the compounding fees, their plan approval will be withdrawn. To ensure transparency in plan approval, the BDA will institute a third party monitoring.
Besides, the government will have a zero-tolerance policy to encroachments on drains and roads. Pointing out ineffective monitoring over such violations, CAG had given examples of 11 acre being grabbed by eight encroachers.
On surplus staff in various departments of BDA, the government has decided to open a cell where these staff will be posted. The BDA will examine their education and ability for redeployment wherever there is a need. The surplus Group D employees will be trained and posted as security guards.