Ten housing projects caught in the legal wrangle of demarcating an eco-sensitive zone around the Okhla Bird Sanctuary have received completion certificates from the Noida Authority, paving the way for 7,000 buyers to take possession of their homes.

This is the major first set of completion certificates issued since the eco-sensitive zone around the park was notified by the Union environment ministry on August 19.

Nearly 53 projects coming up in sectors near the peripheries of the park are in various stages of development. Completion certificates for the remaining projects are also being processed.

Among housing projects where possession can now be given are ATS, Prateek, R G Residency and Eldeco. World Trade Tower, Garden Galleria and the DLF mall have also been granted certificates.

These projects were affected after the National Green Tribunal restrained the authorities from issuing completion certificates to projects located within a 10km radius of the Okhla Bird Sanctuary because the government had not notified an eco-sensitive area around the park.

“We are doing our best to expedite the procedure,” Manoj Rai, officer on special duty at the Noida Authority, told TOI. “There is a standard procedure to give clearance to a project. Before giving the certificate, the Authority will have to address the objections filed by home buyers and other people, if any. It’s a slow process as we have to conduct site inspections, compounding, if any and look into several other details both minor and major,” he said.

Rai added, “Now that the completion certificates are being handed over to developers or builders, they will in turn be able to hand over possession of the residential units to home-buyers.”

An officer said the delay in issuing completion certificates could be attributed to developers’ inability to clear their dues to the Noida Authority. “Without a ‘no dues certificate’, completion certificates will not be given for any project. This has already been notified to the builders and developers,” Rai, who heads the Authority’s planning department, said.

The Authority, officers said, was prepared to accommodate the additional population that is expected to move into Noida as completion certificates for more projects come through. Around 35,000 flats can be delivered to buyers once the certificates arrive.

The eco-sensitive zone around the Okhla Bird Sanctuary has been marked at 100 metres to the east, west and south of the park and 1.27km to the north, up to the DND Flyway across the Yamuna riverbed. It doesn’t affect any real estate project in Noida.

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