GURGAON: The proposed exclusive development body for Gurgaon is inching towards reality. The officer on special deputy (OSD), who was assigned the task of drafting the Bill of the Gurgaon Development Authority (GDA), has submitted to the state government the revised draft, which will be reviewed by Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar in a couple of days.
On November 1, OSD V Umashankar had uploaded a draft Bill on the GDA website and had given everyone, including the residents of Gurgaon, one month to submit their suggestions and feedback. Apart from this, the OSD also held a series of consultation sessions with various stakeholders in Gurgaon comprising industry associations, labour unions, town planners, real estate developers, municipal bodies, activists, NGOs, district heads of political parties, market associations and residents of Huda sectors and private builder areas.
Talking to media on Saturday, the OSD chose to keep his cards close to his chest and was unwilling to reveal the contents of the revised draft bill. “All that I can say at this point in time is that the revised draft bill of the GDA has already been submitted to the state government. There are quite a few significant changes in the draft bill which have been made following the consultation sessions with several stakeholders. While the basic concepts remain the same, there are some changes in the key clauses,” Umashankar said.
The revised draft Bill will be uploaded on the GDA website after it is reviewed by the CM. “A meeting to review this revised draft Bill is likely to take place on December 14 in Chandigarh after which it will be uploaded on the website. However, this is not the final draft Bill and could be further refined,” he said.
The Haryana government wants the active participation of the local residents in the formation of GDA and hence a residents’ advisory council will also be constituted. The council will advise the vice-chairman of the GDA on issues concerning infrastructure, traffic and urban environment plans and it will also monitor implementation.
It will have nine to 11 members from various residents’ welfare associations, civil society, labour, and industry and business establishments. The OSD had received only about 50 submissions online regarding feedback and suggestions, which was less than what was expected by the authorities.
The draft Bill also provides that there would be a mandatory review of the performance of the GDA through a committee of experts to be constituted by the state government. The review will analyse the extent to which the GDA has been able to fulfil its objectives on infrastructure, standards of living, social, economic and industrial development of Gurgaon. It would also judge the effectiveness of the coordination mechanisms between various agencies functioning in Gurgaon and lay out the future vision of the GDA.
The recommendations of the review committee would be tabled before the Vidhan Sabha. In effect, the process would allow the Vidhan Sabha and the people of Gurgaon to judge the performance of GDA. This would permit course correction to be undertaken from time to time and even lead to dissolution and repeal of the GDA if it continuously fails to perform to the expectations of the residents of Gurgaon.
No such provision exists in any legislation in Haryana or in the governing legislation of other urban development authorities in the country. This innovation in legal architecture could emerge as a significant accountability tool.
Credits ET Realty