In a PIL, group of citizens seek compulsory inspection of property before granting sanction for plan, the Karnataka High Court has directed the State government and civic agencies to ensure that building bye-laws are strictly complied with and residential accommodation is not used for commercial purposes without obtaining proper sanction.
A Division Bench comprising acting Chief Justice Subhro Kamal Mukherjee and Justice B.V. Nagarathna issued the directions in relation to two separate PIL petitions, one filed by a residents’ welfare group and another by a group of concerned citizens, complaining about illegalities in construction of private multi-storey buildings and illegal use of residential buildings for commercial purposes.
In its petition, Rajmahal Vilas II Welfare Society, while complaining of illegal use of residential buildings for commercial purposes in their locality, had sought directions for the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) and the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) to conduct a survey of the area for identifying such buildings and for taking action for using them only for residential purpose.
The Bench disposed of this petition by directing authorities to “strictly implement the provisions of the municipal laws, so that no residential accommodation is utilised for commercial purpose without obtaining proper sanction”.
In another PIL, a group of citizens had sought compulsory inspection of property before granting sanction for plan, particularly multi-storey structures, to ascertain whether the existing infrastructure is sufficient to accommodate such structures, and for a detailed guidelines for the process of plan sanction.
As the counsel for civic agencies and the State admitted that there can be no two opinions that building bye-laws must be strictly complied with, the Bench disposed of the petition while directing authorities “to implement the building bye-laws strictly, in accordance with law”.
A Division Bench issued the directions in relation to two PIL petitions complaining about the issue.