Srinagar: The government of J&K has admitted that illegal constructions in Kashmir Valley have come up due to carelessness and negligence of the field staff entrusted with checking and preventing the same.
In a circular issued by the Housing and Urban Development Department (HUDD), it is said that it has been brought to the notice of the Department through the Anti-Corruption Bureau that illegal constructions are not being reported timely by the field staff to their senior officers. Thus, it said, these illegal constructions are carried out due to carelessness and negligence of the field staff that are entrusted with the responsibility of checking such illegal constructions well in time.
To prevent the same in future, it has asked all the heads of Departments to direct the field staff to assign responsibilities and report deviations from building permission violations on time. And if this order is not followed, it warns, disciplinary action will follow against the officials.
“In cases of unreported/ delayed violations of building permissions, disciplinary action as warranted under rules should be immediately taken against such employees,” the circular reads.
Would these new directions be followed remains unknown but what is well known is that scores of illegal constructions are going on in Kashmir Valley and nothing is being done to stop them. Although the government claims to have sealed many structures, but it covers only the tip of an iceberg.
The circular has come as a reminder of the existing laws and rules which clearly define penalties against officials responsible.
Kashmir Reader has learnt that LAWDA, the enforcement agency for preserving Dal Lake and other water bodies, rarely acts as required. An official of the body told Kashmir Reader that enforcement has taken place only when there was a complaint registered, which happens rarely, he said.
“As a result of which, concrete structures have come up inside the Dal Lake in broad daylight. It remains a big question as to how did they come up in the first place,” he added.