Relief in sight for close to 40 lakh people of unauthorised colonies, Urban ministry to submit report to HC this week
Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit’s ambitious amnesty scheme for those residing in unauthorised colonies will face its final test this week when the Union Urban Development Ministry submits its report to the Delhi High Court.
Over the weekend, senior Delhi government officials met Urban Development Ministry officials to decide on who would approach the High Court for a final clearance before the amnesty can be granted.
Revenue minister A K Walia on Sunday told Newsline the ministry would file a final report on Tuesday or Wednesday.
“This is the final step before more than 900 unauthorised colonies in Delhi can be regularised. I have convened a meeting of top revenue department officials on Tuesday to follow up the issue,” Walia said. He said all documentation for these colonies had been completed.
Chief Secretary P K Tripathi met officials in the ministry over the weekend to decide who would submit the report to the High Court. Walia said the ministry would now go ahead and report to the High Court.
“This is regarding a pending over regularisation (of colonies) filed in 1993,” Walia said.
In 2008, the High Court allowed the government to provide basic amenities, including water and sewage facilities, in unauthorised colonies, but with a rider that the court did not recognise this as regularisation.
Senior government officials said the report, which would be tabled before the High Court this week, would help vacate that interim order and grant amnesty to these colonies.
A big-ticket election promise before the 2008 Assembly elections, the regularisation of unauthorised colonies remains Sheila Dikshit’s biggest electoral ploy, particularly with Delhi going to polls next year.
Close to 40 lakh people reside in these colonies and many belong to the Congress’s core vote bank. Dikshit had directed all related government departments to expedite the regularisation process following the Congress’s drubbing in the municipal elections earlier this year.
The list of 900 colonies, which are to be regularised, have been cleared by the Archaeological Society of India, the Forest department, the Delhi Development Authority, the Revenue department and the municipal authorities.
The Delhi government had sent the list of colonies to the office of the L-G for approval.