Supreme Court stays High Court order on Akrama-Sakrama scheme

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Bengaluru: The Supreme Court on Friday effectively put the brakes on the controversial Akrama-Sakrama scheme to facilitate regularisation of unauthorised constructions.

Admitting the special leave petitions (SLP) filed by Namma Bengaluru Foundation and Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrashekar against Karnataka High Court judgment upholding the scheme on  December 13, 2016. The Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice of India JS Khehar asked the authorities not to process applications filed under this scheme.

The bench declined the request of the state government, which had entered a caveat to expedite the hearing. The SLP has been converted to a civil appeal and will be heard in due course of time.

The petitioners contended that the High Court failed to consider the effect of the newly inserted section 76FF of the Karnataka Town and Country Planning Act, 1961, is uncanalized and excessive vis-a-vis section 14A of the Act concerning the master plan where changes are permitted only if they are in public interest and doesn’t contravene any law.

The petitioners also stated that BBMP’s building bylaws permit not more than 5 per cent deviation whereas the scheme proposes to regularize 50 per cent violations.

The petitioners stated that the HC, while dismissing their petitions based on the apex court’s decision in relation to a scheme under the Tamil Nadu Town and Country Planning Act, failed to appreciate the reasons safeguard in the Tamil Nadu enactment. The enactments under challenge, by not only condoning the violations, but also validating illegalities, lead to the unwinding of all efforts made to ensure the enforcement of right of life and safety of citizens at stake, as had been sought to be achieved through the enactment of the KTCP Act in the first place ” the petitioners said seeking the Supreme Court’s intervention.

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