Lokayukta wants property buyers vigilant

By Team Mangalorean
Photographs: RK Bhat

MANGALORE, August 16, 2007: The Lokayukta of Karnataka N. Santhosh Hegde has called on the buyers of the property to make extensive use of the Right to Information act (RTI) to keep their investment in land and apartments secure from unscrupulous practices that the builders usually involve in.
Taking part in an interactive session on the theme 'The National Building Code and Mangalore city' organised by the Kanara Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) on Thursday he said, the people should induce legislations like `title insurance and quality insurance' to protect themselves in the deceptive market of land and apartments.

During his talk Mr. Hegde said dwelling units were the most important for the common people who invest their lifetime savings and the unscrupulous builders and developers cannot be allowed to take them for a ride. All the housing areas should be so developed that there would be no compromise on quality and safety and every buyer, builder, promoter and the licencing authority should be honest about their project right from the conception stage.

He cautioned that usually the greedy builders put all the stake holders into trouble and they should be controlled legally if they do not abide by the approved plan. The approved plan by the licencing authority could be got under the RTI he added. The National Building Code (NBC) has to be seriously adhered scrupulously while making zoning norms and while amending the Comprehensive Development Plans in all the cities and though the building laws are done in accordance with the state policies the NBC regulations will have to be followed at all times, he asserted.

Mr. Hegde told that the NBC has been drafted with an eye for the future developmental designs and planners should take into the account the recommendations of the NBC if they are going to construct buildings for the future. He said planning of a city that does not allow even the emergency vehicles to ply without obstruction was no planning at all.
Since the introduction of the Right to Information act and the transparency act, the buyers and other stake holders were able to seek and get information on every aspect of the building and these legal facilities should be made use by everybody who wishes to buy property he appealed.

Later answering queries of the media and press persons Mr. Hegde told that there are number of buildings in Mangalore and about 600-700 buildings and Multi story complexes in Bangalore that have violated the rules and regularising them would be a crime.

Mr. Hegde during his interaction said it was necessary to make the builder accountable for his actions and every official in the licencing authority should be held responsible for not keeping up with the rules when issuing licences.

Earlier, President of the KCCI John Prasad Menezes presented a memorandum to the Lokayukta and vice president Kumble Narsimha Prabhu introduced Mr. Hegde.

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