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Laws to read, reply & build

Patna, Dec. 14: The urban development and housing department has put the long-pending proposed building by-laws of the state on the public domain today.

In a first-ever move, the proposed by-laws prohibit any new construction along roads less than 20-foot wide (6 metres).

No multi-storeyed structure would be permitted on a plot less than 800 square metres in area. Architects’ role in passing the building map has been abolished. Provisions have also been made for leaving a flank on either side of the road.

“Acting on the instructions of chief minister Nitish Kumar, we have uploaded the draft of Bihar Municipal Building By-Laws, 2013, on the official website of urban development and housing department (www.urban.bih.nic.in) and the department’s citizen grievance redressal website www.nagarseva.in.

Residents’ feedback on the by-laws would be accepted till December 25 and the department would review it over the next five days.

“Finally, we would send the draft by-laws along with the incorporated feedback to the cabinet seeking final approval,” said S. Siddharth, secretary, urban development and housing department.

The steps for enactment of the by-laws were expedited after the urban development and housing department on December 13 last year imposed a blanket ban on approval of maps for any multi-storeyed building over the height of 11 metres till the by-laws come into effect.

The proposed building by-laws would be effective only on new construction and the existing structures would be left untouched.

“Though the by-laws do not affect the existing structures but any modification in the existing buildings would need to be done as per the provisions of proposed building byelaws. The idea behind strict norms for ensuring wider roads and more open spaces around the structures is to promote development in the outer periphery of the existing towns, which are still to be developed. Moreover, we are also going to conduct a study on regulating the existing development,” said Siddharth.

As per the provisions of the proposed by-laws, architects would no longer be authorised to pass the maps of buildings as it would be approved automatically through a CAD (computer aided design) software platform on the website of the civic body concerned.

Also, the builders shall have to be registered with the corresponding regional development authority on payment of prescribed fees.

“The by-laws prescribe single window clearance system to process all the no objection certificates (NoCs) and grant necessary permissions. This would cover issuance of completion certificate, occupancy certificate, and fire safety certificate among others within a maximum period of 30 days from making the respective application,” said Siddharth.

In order to avoid any objection to the by-laws in future, the urban development and housing department is in the process of consulting all stakeholders.

“We are going to hold interactions with builders/ developers and engineers and architects on December 21. Another meeting with commerce, industry and trade bodies is slated on December 22,” said Siddharth.

The proposed by-laws also state that for a private road, which gives access to one or more buildings, the owners of the said private road shall develop the road and storm water drain as required by the local authority.

“No new construction would be permitted up to 200 metres on either side of the boundary earmarked by the irrigation department along the Ganga,” said Siddharth.

Till date, building construction activities across the state are broadly governed and regulated by the Bihar Municipal Act, 2007, and by-laws of erstwhile Patna Regional Development Authority (PRDA).

After the PRDA was abolished, the Bihar Municipal Act, 2007, stated that the PRDA by-laws would be in effect till the state government forms the new building by-laws.


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