Illegal Buildings
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The Devendra Fadnavis-led Maharashtra Government has proposed several changes in the calculation process of penalties in order to deal with lakhs of illegal buildings in the state. This decision by the State Government came as a relief to various residents and occupants of illegal buildings.

This is an improvement on the prior calculation that is carried out to levy penalties on unauthorized buildings. According to an official, the modifications for the same purpose have already been published by the State Government’s Urban Development Department a few days back.

According to the modification, the penalties alias compounding charges will be calculated for providing public amenities, utilities and services in the corresponding areas. An official of the Urban Development Department said that the notification is a part of Government’s effort to resolve the issue of illegal structures in the state which totals in lakhs and also include residential ones.

In October 2017, the State Government issued rules related to regularizing illegal structures that were constructed before December 31, 2015, on payment of a penalty. According to the rules, any such structure will be declared as a compounded structure soon after the owner and the occupant make payment for compounding charges, infrastructure charges and premium. Till now, the compounding charges are calculated on the basis of ready reckoner rates also known as the circle rates which were quite high according to an expert.

The expert also felt that the high-costing penalties are the primary reason that makes the owners of illegal; properties oppose payment of charges and obtaining the ‘compounded structure’ status. Expert feels that new method of penalty calculation will encourage the owners to approach authorities to get their property regularized.