GSPCB wants builders to maintain STPs for five years

PANAJI: The Goa State Pollution Control Board (GSPCB) has written to the Town and Country Planning (TCP) Act asking TCP to ensure that real estate developers operate and maintain sewage treatment plants for high-rise buildings and residential complexes for five years. The move has drawn flak from the real estate lobby who argue that the government is consistently increasing the burden on builders.

“The pollution control board has asked that builders maintain the sewerage systems for five years. This must be included in the bye-laws for buildings or TCP can make this mandatory while issuing building permissions,” a source with the state pollution control board said.

According to sources, the decision to put the onus of maintaining the sewerage system on builders was taken up during the board meeting of the GSPCB on April 28. Chief town planner S T Puttaraju said that he was yet to receive any formal proposal from the pollution control board. “We have already put conditions on builders to ensure that the project is fit for occupation. Such a clause (to maintain sewage treatment plants for five years) has to be done through the contract between the buyer and the seller. Or the government can intervene,” he said.

Aggrieved over the developments, CREDAI-Goa has slammed the government, calling it a severe blow to the industry. “Builders are burdened with high infrastructure tax which is paid to the town and country planning department at the time of issuing approval to the project, which includes the maintenance of the sewerage system. The promises made by the government on providing infrastructure has not been adhered to and fulfilled and yet the infrastructure tax has been consistently increased by the government with just an assurance that infrastructure will be provided by the government,” CREDAI president Jagannath Prabhudessai said.

CREDAI has asserted that builders transfer the operation and maintenance of the residential complexes, including the sewage treatment plant, once the project is completed to the housing society, along with the corpus funds. The maintenance is then carried out by the builders till the formation of the legal entity.

Currently, it is mandatory for developers to setup a sewage treatment plant for more than 40 residential flats in a project.

Credits ET Realty

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