In a relief to the residents of unauthorised colonies, the Punjab Cabinet has given a nod to the policy for regularisation of about 5,000 unauthorised colonies in the State.

The policy, approved under the Punjab Laws (Special Provisions) Act-2013, will provide relief to about 5,000 colonies covering two lakh individual plot holders or building owners’ across the State, an official spokesman said here.

In another significant decision, the Punjab Cabinet announced to levy property tax by amending the Punjab Municipal Act, 1911 and the Punjab Municipal Corporation Act, 1976, in accordance with the recommendations of Cabinet Sub-committee regarding property tax.

The decisions were taken in a State Cabinet meeting presided over by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal.

The policy for regularisation of unauthorised colonies envisaged bringing all the unauthorised colonies into the planning framework for regularisation.

The policy will also ensure basic civic amenities to the residents of unauthorised colonies or areas, he said.

The policy, which is a one-time opportunity, will be applicable for a period of one year starting from April 1, 2013, the spokesman said.

Only those unapproved colonies constructed before April 1, 2013 will be considered under the policy, he added.

The plot holders or colonisers will have to get their offence compounded for regularisation.

The colonisers are required to pay composition fee for compounding their offences and the fee will vary from area to area for the colonies, the spokesman said.

The approximate rates of composition fee vary from Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs 15 lakh for an acre.

Similarly, the individual plot or building owners could come forward for regularisation by paying charges from Rs 50 to Rs 500 a square yard, he said.

The money collected would be used for providing basic amenities in these colonies, he said.

The policy does not cover colonies which are set up over land belonging to the State, Central Governments, public undertakings, Panchayat lands, Waqf Board, Land under the Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA), he said.

All educational institutions, which were not covered under charitable institutions, will be provided 50 per cent rebate on property tax, the spokesman said.

The Cabinet also gave nod to the amendment in the Land Pooling Policy to enable the land owners to become partners in the development process.

Under the amendment, a fixed sum of the value of land would be ensured to the land owners, he said.

The Council of Ministers also gave go-ahead to the Punjab Compulsory Registration Marriage Rules, 2013 for registering marriages of residents of Punjab.

All marriages were required to be registered within 90 days of the solemnisation of the marriages, he said.

The Cabinet also decided to amend the Punjab Ministers Travelling Allowance Rules, 1953 and the Chief Parliamentary Secretary/ Parliamentary Secretary Travelling Allowance Rules, 2006 to enhance mileage from Rs 12 to Rs 15/km on the usage of their private vehicles in lieu of official cars.

(This article was published on June 16, 2013)
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