Punjab regularisation of unuthorised colonies bill okayed for Introduction in budget session

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ANU(ChandigarhCityNews)

Cabinet-1 CHIEF MINISTER’s OFFICE, PUNJAB

      MOVED AIMED AT PROVIDING BASIC AMENITIES TO RESIDENTS OF UNAUTHORISED COLONIES DEVELOPED BEFOREMARCH 19, 2018

 The Bill for regularisation of unauthorised colonies, plots and buildings is all set to be presented in the Budget session of the Vidhan Sabha following the go-ahead by the Punjab Cabinet on Monday.

“The Punjab Laws (Special Provisions for regularization of unauthorized colony) Bill, 2018” seeks to provide basic civic amenities like water supply, sewerage, electricity and road connectivity to people living in the unauthorised colonies. It will also pave the way for the formulation of a comprehensive policy for regularisation of these colonies and plots/buildings across the state, an official spokesperson disclosed after a Cabinet meeting, chaired by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh.

There are at present around 7000 illegal colonies, of which 5000 were located outside MC limits, disclosed the spokesperson, adding that no registration of the illegal colonies would be allowed.

Besides providing basic amenities to the residents of these colonies, the move was aimed at bringing all the unplanned areas into the planning framework, said the spokesperson. It would give an opportunity to those colonizers/residents who had failed to apply for either getting their unauthorized colonies regularized or bringing unauthorized plots/buildings falling in the authorized colonies compounded under previous policies.

Highlighting the key features of this policy, the spokesperson said unauthorized colonies developed before March 19, 2018 shall be regularized, with regularization charges earlier paid under the previous policies to be adjusted. However, stringent action will be taken against the colonizer of a colony which comes up after the cut-off date.

Liberal charges have been fixed for regularization of colonies, and charges received from the regularization of a particular colony shall be used for providing basic infrastructure to that colony only. Payment of charges shall be in instalments within a period of one year, the spokesperson added.

Committees of officers shall be constituted to regularize the colonies and plots, and any developer applying for regularisation of his colony shall have a Residents Welfare Association (RWA) in place. The RWA can also submit an application for regularization of the colony to the concerned authority under the provisions of the Bill.

Further, to streamline the regularisation process, unauthorized colonies have been categorized as per the built-up area (upto 25%, 25% to 50%, more than 50% area), with a special provision for exceptional colony having more than 75% built-up area.

Cabinet-2  CHIEF MINISTER’S OFFICE, PUNJAB

 CAPT AMARINDER GOVT DECIDES TO IMPOSE PERMANENT BAN ON HOOKAH BARS IN PUNJAB

 The Punjab government, led by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, has decided to impose a permanent ban on Hookah bars in the state instead of issuing temporary orders against them every two months.

The state cabinet, at a meeting chaired by the Chief Minister, approved an amendment to the Cigarette and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) Act, 2003 (COTPA 2003), for the prevention and control of diseases caused by the use of tobacco products. The move is aimed at reducing the trend of hookah/hookah bars, besides use of tobacco in various forms amongst youngsters.

Giving details, an official spokesperson said the amendment would result in a complete ban on running of Hookah Bars in the state. The proposed amendment will be placed before the Vidhan Sabha and, after being passed by the House, will be reserved for the assent of the President of India, he added.

Under the present scheme of things, Section 144 of CrPC is promulgated against Hookah Bars in all the districts of the states for two months, with extension required at the end of the period. The extension orders are issued every two months by the district administration, providing a temporary solution to the menace of hookah bars, which encourage use of tobacco among youngsters, leading to potential health hazards.

As per available data, an hour’s average of hookah smoking contains 20-200 puffs which can deliver 50 litres (which is about 13 gallons) of smoke, containing harmful and carcinogenic chemicals. Health risks of smoking Hookah includes exposure to toxic chemicals that are not filtered out by the water, and also risk of infectious disease like Tuberculosis resulting from sharing of Hookah. The Hookah tobacco addiction often ends up becoming a trigger for other drug addictions.

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