Residents staying in DDA flats in D-6, Vasant Kunj are a worried lot since they could lose their structures on the terraces and a number of amenities, after the Delhi Development Authority sent them an order issued by the Director-General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on August 26, stating that some structures cross the permitted height and need to be removed.
The DGCA order asks DDA to reduce the height of 15 buildings and structures in Ganga, Yamuna, Narmada and Saraswati apartments in Vasant Kunj, as they are over the permissible height and serve as obstacles near IGI Airport.
The residents’ welfare associations (RWAs) of the four apartments said that the DDA had taken the decision without consulting residents and owners. Professor Abhai Maurya, president of Yamuna apartments RWA, said he was among those who invested his life savings into the apartment because it offered certain amenities. Foremost among concerns was that their water tanks and fire tanks are located a few metres above permitted height. They said there will be a number of problems while relocating the tanks and this may lead to disrupted supply.
They said that the lift machine rooms are located on the top floor, without which lifts will not be able to function.
NS Mor, president of the RWA Ganga apartments, said, “The flats were built by the DDA before the Commonwealth Games for players, after which they were sold. So mistake was committed by them before selling them. Why should residents have to bear the brunt? In addition to this, owners of the flats were not consulted before the DDA agreed to the DGCA.”
RWAs said they are seeking appointments with the DDA and the DGCA. DDA Vice-Chairperson Anurag Jain said they would examine the issue and ensure no injustice is done to the people.
Sources in DDA said the case is being taken up with the airport authority: “There are illegal structures being built on top floors in some flats while in some cases some structures like DDA’s water tanks are coming in the way. “We will file an appeal with the airport authority and conduct a joint survey with them to see how these tanks can be moved and brought to a legal height.” The senior DDA official said top floor homes would not go but concerns raised are regarding structures built on the terrace: “Houses constructed legally will stay.”
The apartments are located within a 20-km radius of the IGI Airport. While flights pass every few minutes, residents insist not a single mishap has been recorded since they started living there around 10 years ago.
“My parents stay on the eighth floor and there are anxieties among top-floor residents that the roof might be demolished. This means we would have to be rehabilitated for no fault of ours,” said a resident.
Each of the four apartments has 10 towers, of which four are high-rise. In total, each of the apartments has 476 flats, and 15 high-rise buildings have been pointed out as obstacles.
The permitted altitude ranges from 297.21 to 303.216 metres, depending on location of the building and distance from airport. This means infringement on all the buildings is different — they start at 0.12 metres and go up to 3.97 metres.
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Ashna ButaniAshna is a correspondent with The Indian Express… read more