Saturday, February 17, 2018
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DM Rajshekhar

We hail the stern stand taken by Allahabad district magistrate Rajshekhar in respect of the unauthorised constructions that have come up in Allahabad. At a meeting it was pleaded that the houses thus built be regularized after realizing penalty from the owners. Fair enough. But this  is the one-sided action that has been taken by the authorities since a long-long time.

It is obvious that illegal constructions cannot come up without the connivance of some members of the ADA staff. And they do not connive out of a feeling of charity. I am told that quite a handsome amount has to be paid to them before they okay the deal. But when the fraud is discovered, it is only the house owner who suffers. He is asked to pay compounding fees in order  to  escape legal action,. The house owner does that and it all ends on a happy note. But the officials who ruined the city, violated the ADA norms and went out of the way to help the owners/builders were having a good fun with the   corruption  money.
Rajshekhar says that for these illegal constructions the officials too are responsible. Hence ,  first these officials would be identified and punished and then the next step towards legalizing the structures would be done. This is a bold decision and I am sure his move has been blessed by the ADA Chairman, the Commissioner Mr Kumar Kamlesh.
But the job does not end here. I may tell the Commissioner and the DM that unauthorised construction work could be going on in full swing in several posh areas of Civil Lines too, But we  have not heard any single builder being trapped here and penalized. It is possible that  since the stakes   in Civil Lines are very  high, and the tainted income too is fabulous, the culprits could be taking several safeguards to ensure that they are not caught. People tell me that illegal works are continued most shamefully, most disgracefully. But they go unchecked. I was told that the drama that usually takes place is simple. The unauthorized construction is allowed. Then suddenly ADA comes from somewhere and stops all construction. There is no work for several days. Then one fine morning work is resumed. How and why the resumption takes place may not be difficult to guess. The Commissioner will have to send members  of a secret vigilance squad  to screen and search for illegal constructions that are still raging in Civil Lines, I am told.

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