Sunday, July 11, 2010

Your house can’t be taken forcibly under TDR

There is much anguish and hand wringing in the city about people losing valuable parts of their cherished homes to road-widening. The most vocal of the affected 40,000 have been lambasting the BBMP’s move meant to smoothen the flow of traffic in a very congested city. They can all breathe easy. No acquisition can be done without the owner’s consent, according to the current law, under transferable development rights (TDR). Simply put, if a person doesn’t want to give his/her property for road-widening, then he/she need not.

Right to Information (RTI) documents in possession with TOI have thrown up the surprising and hitherto well-hidden clause which states that properties can be acquired for road-widening only under TDR. The catch — which favours the home owners — comes in the next clause; TDR can be enforced only if the owner is willing. If he isn’t willing, the only option open to BBMP is to forcibly acquire the property by paying current market rates under the Karnataka Land Acquisition Act. A process that is very expensive, tedious and time-consuming and as such not a route preferred by BBMP to acquire land for road-widening.

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