Unauthorised colonies: After 5 failed attempts by Delhi govt, mapping task now with DDA

CM Kejriwal with Urban Development Minister Satyendar Jain, Thursday. (Express Photo by Amit Mehra)

After five unsuccessful attempts by the Delhi government s Urban Development Department to map unauthorised colonies in the capital, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) has been entrusted with carrying out the mapping exercise a pre-requisite for any regularisation process to take shape.

A senior Delhi government official said the DDA, the primary land-owning agency in the capital, will now undertake mapping surveys, assisted by the Urban Development Department.

Earlier this year, Urban Development Minister Satyendar Jain had cleared a proposal to use drones to map 1,797 such colonies. The mapping exercise will help determine which houses are eligible for regularisation, in accordance with the cut-off date of January 1, 2015.

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Over the years, the colonies have expanded. Only proper geo-spatial mapping can help us find the ineligible ones. Somehow, all our attempts failed, an official said.

Since AAP took office in 2015, it adopted five different methods to map (Total Station Mapping) the colonies, including surveys by teams of the Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, the Survey of India and GSDL (Geospatial Delhi Limited), and use of drones, as per a written response in the Delhi Assembly.

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The exercise was also hit after two agencies M/S SKP and M/S Prime Meridian had refused work on account of pending bills, as per the UD s official notes. The initial deadline was September 30, 2018. However, the Delhi High Court had extended it by a year. The maps that would come up were to be authenticated by the revenue department.

Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari Thursday claimed the AAP government has sought a further extension till 2021. The repeated demands for extension shows that Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal does not want to provide amenities to people of unauthorised colonies as he wants to use them as their vote bank, Tiwari said.