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South Delhi residents red- flag mixed land use.

THE residential welfare associations in South Delhi have sought intervention from Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung to prevent the abuse of the mix land use policy and the law and order problem arising out of it.

The RWAs alleged that " no scientific survey has been conducted yet before carrying out the plan", which has led to rampant commercialisation of residential colonies, thereby adding to the burden on civic infrastructure. They claimed that mixed land use has " made the residential areas unfit for living." Karan Aggarwal, resident of East of Kailash, said that there is not a single residential premise around his building that does not have a commercial activity running. " It has become more of a nuisance than convenience. The parking space for the residents has been taken over by commercial establishments, and pedestrian walks have also been encroached. I have written to the government several times, but no action has been taken so far." Sachin Sapra, a lawyer and an activist at Rajouri Garden, said: " There are several cases in the high court that challenge the mix land use provision in the master plan of Delhi 2021. There is a need to notify the local area plans in consultation with the residents of the area. So far, even the zonal area plan has not been notified." Several residents rued that planned areas such as Greater Kailash, Green Park, South Extension and several other parts of Delhi have become very congested owing to mixed land use. " The crime rate has increased and parks, roads and footpaths have been encroached," they said.

Rajiv Kakria, a citizen activist in Greater Kailash- 1 said: " The mix land use is an attempt to fill available open spaces in residential areas without proper planning. The important issues like sanitation, safety and availability of spacious roads have been not taken into consideration before implementing it.

The guest houses in our locality have become a den of unwanted elements. It is no longer safe for a woman to walk without being stared or teased by the anti- social elements." However, Kakria pointed out that the RWAs are not against the development of unauthorised colonies, for which other plans are being drafted. " But commercialisation will turn planned plotted colonies into upscale unauthorised areas," he added.

Atul Goyal, convener of URJA -- an umbrella body of Delhi RWAs -- said: " The government is doing this eyeing votes, but it will prove to be a disaster for the city. Only 24 kinds of commercial activities are allowed in a residential area under mix land use plan. But under its garb, various commercial activities are being carried out. Places like East Delhi, Gandhi Nagar, Shahadra, Ganesh Nagar and Jhilmil have already fallen prey to it. Hazardous industrial activities, which are being operated from homes, congest these areas and put residents' lives at risk." Most complaints have poured in from GK, Green Park, etc.

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Publication:Mail Today (New Delhi, India)
Geographic Code:9INDI
Date:Sep 25, 2016
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