The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Highrise rule overhaul to rehabilitate tenants

Post-Ludhiana Hosiery Building, the government is considering a proposal from the civic authorities to amend highrise rules, making it mandatory for owners to rehabilitate occupants in case of such buildings being destroyed in a major fire or in any kind of accident or in a natural calamity.

Mayor Subrata Mukherjee put forth the proposal in course of a meeting with urban development minister Asok Bhattacharya at Writers’ Buildings on Thursday. The meeting centred round the reconstruction of the blaze-hit Burrabazar building. Along with fire minister Pratim Chatterjee, senior officials of the Calcutta Municipal Corporation and police commissioner Sujoy Chakraborty, the minister and the mayor discussed a string of measures for renovation and rehabilitation at Ludhiana building.

After the meeting, Mukherjee said the proposed amendment is aimed at “minimising the allegations of sabotage” almost always levelled against the landlord by occupants after incidents of fire in highrises.

According to Mukherjee, the government has been urged to take immediate steps to track down the real owner of the Burrabazar building, missing since December 21, when it went up in flames, rendering hundreds homeless and resulting in losses running into crores.

The civic authorities have proposed that the building be taken over by the government if the owner cannot be found “for a long time”.

The mayor further said that even if the owner was found, the civic body would propose that he hand over the building, in exchange for compensation at par with the present market value of the establishment.

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