May 2016 \ Diaspora News \ DIASPORA NEWS
Why the delay?

The infamous red tape has surfaced again to harass NRIs

  • Mr Jaipal Gupta

The infamous red tape has surfaced again to harass NRIs

This time we are highlighting the case of M/s J.J. Consultants Private Limited headed by NRI Mr Jaipal Gupta that has been knocking on the doors of Delhi’s top civic authorities for the last two years to get approvals for additional construction at their south-west Delhi farmhouse. What they are actually doing is knocking their heads against the wall, for in spite of numerous letters, visits and telephone calls to the offices of the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), Delhi Development Authority (DDA), Ministry of Urban Development (MuD) and others, the farmhouse approvals have not come through. It appears to be injustice because the company’s papers are in order, and huge deposits have been made which have been willfully accepted by the SDMC.

In March 2014, J.J. Consultants deposited an amount of Rs 1.88 crore with the SDMC towards regularization of its 5-acre farmhouse in Bijwasan, in south-west Delhi. This was in compliance of rules, regulations and requirements applicable for low density residential areas issued by the SDMC, DDA and MuD. Post the deposit, J.J. Consultants submitted architectural plans in April 2014 for approval of increasing constructed area from the hitherto existing 1,602 sq. metres to 3,563 sq. metres. As per the regularization amount of Rs 1.88 crore deposited, J.J. Construction is allowed to construct up to 6,070 sq metres—equal to 30 per cent of the farm area of 20,234 sq. metres. While the SDMC has pocketed the money, it has not allowed J.J. Consultants to go ahead with the construction in what appears gross violation of fundamental right to property rebuilding as per law. Representatives from J.J. Consultants including its director, Mr Subodh C Jain, and the firm’s architect Mr Rohit Dayal, have been regularly calling on officials in SDMC, DDA and the office of the Minister for Urban Development. The MuD has written to the DDA to deal with the matter for taking appropriate action as per law, but things have not moved ahead. The president of the local RWA has also taken up the matter with the civic authorities, stating that farmhouse owners have been “running pillar to post” to get the sanctions for which due payments were made long back. The DDA has said that the matter lies within the jurisdiction of the SDMC, the body that continues to harass and ignore the repeated pleas of the NRI and the RWA.

The point then is, are we really concerned about our NRIs? Is this how we expect them to be a part of Make in India, Skill India, Clean India, and Invest India? When we are not ready to listen to their “Mann Ki Baat” and treat them so shabbily, waste their precious time, take their money and then do not provide them the solutions, what is the larger message they will eventually give to their fellow NRIs? The capital needs to wake up, and shake up its sloth and lethargy if we are to really make a difference to the way NRIs perceive the real India. Merely holding PBDs and giving awards will not work. Change must be tangible, and fast. Else, the goodwill built by Prime Minister Modi will be lost in the ineptitude of bodies like the SDMC.

 —Empire Bureau