Srinagar 4 January (KNB): There has been a drastic decline in Srinagar Municipal Corporation’s (SMC) Building Permission Revenue during the last year as well as applicants alleging incompetence of Joint Commissioner Planning (JCP) whose office was locked by Deputy Mayor for not doing his job towards the Corporation.
As per the data available with Kashmir News Bureau, the SMC revenue through Building Permission Fee was Rs. 41,221,836 for the year of 2016-17, Rs. 50,946,043 for the year of 2017-18, Rs. 99,145,270 for the year 2018-19, Rs. 149,871,671 for the year 2019-20 but for the year 2020-2021 (up to September) is only 9,714,722, which clearly indicates the decrease in revenue.
The decline as per the records has caused due to not approving hundreds of building permissions of applicants during the year 2020.
The current Joint Commissioner Planning of SMC Hassan Mir took charge of the position in February 2020 and came under criticism by applicants who were denied building permissions even though, had all the legal formalities completed.
An applicant on basis on anonymity said that he had forwarded his file to the office years ago, but has not been approved due to unsound demands from the office of JCP.
“I have lost hope that I’ll get the construction started any time soon, since I’m being made to file all documents again and again even though there are no problems with it.”
“Asking for NOC’s from people living around the land I want to contruct something on, just sounds lame to me. They don’t have any issue with my construction but it seems the JCP does,” he added.
Another applicant alleged that despite following up building permission file regularly for months, the JCP doesn’t pay any heed to them.
“We went to his office several times and he demanded certain changes, we did so and forwarded him the same but he keeps on asking for more changes in the permission and eventually asked to submit all the documents a new.”
He added, “He has been completely ignoring us since we have filed fresh documents again and it seems that the JCP is acting like deaf and dumb.”
Similarly, officials of the department are also annoyed due to the JCP’s unprofessional approach towards his duty.
An official of SMC on basis on anonymity said that they are confused about his nature of rejecting the building permission files.
“Even though we can’t raise our voice cause our jobs are at stake here, but still we do understand the reason for delaying the permission files of a common citizen to construct a house or any other building, even though they attach/provide all the necessary details (Drawings, NOCs, etc.) with it.”
He told Kashmir News Bureau, “Due to JCP’s unsound demands and arguments towards the already pending permission files in the department are not only making the citizens of the city suffer but also the ground enforcement wings and ward officers are facing a lot of difficulty in performing their job,” adding that the revenue generated through building permissions has also suffered due to his unprofessional approach towards his duty.
Another official further said that there has been several complaints against him but so far no action has been taken.
“At least the JCP should consider revising hundreds of pending files and allow the ones with complete documentation to process ahead so that the common person doesn’t suffer anymore.”
Similarly, data reveals that Joint Commissioner Planning has only disposed off 14 building permissions out of the 85 applications received during the month of November in the year 2020. (KNB)