East Delhi civic body gets green approval for raising capacity of C&D waste plant – ET RealEstate

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NEW DELHI: To speed up the process of recycling construction and demolition (C&D) waste, East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) has obtained a permission from Delhi Pollution Control Committee increase the capacity of its plant in Shastri Park.

The plant, inaugurated in 2016, can now daily process and recycle up to 1,000 tonnes of waste in comparison to 500 tonnes earlier. Though EDMC has started dumping 700 tonne C&D waste at the plant every day, it is waiting for the concessionaire operating the plant to augment its capacity.

The permission was granted in March, but the process got delayed due to Covid-19 and some financial issues within the company, said a civic official. “We are expecting that the company will start making by-products in large quantities from December,” he added.

Since 2016, EDMC claimed to have dumped at least eight lakh tonne waste, collected from 54 spots, at the 2.5-acre plant. “Of this, at least 1.7 lakh tonne was recycled to make by-products such as bricks and were supplied to construction sites of various government departments. The rest was also processed and utilised for other purposes,” the official said. Around 1 lakh tonne C&D waste is now lying at the plant and EDMC expects to clear all waste in one year after augmenting the capacity.

“Once the backlog is cleared, we will get enough space to stock by-products such as tiles. There is a plan to operate the plant in double shifts,” the official added. Due to lack of space for processing plants, the capital can process only 3,150 tonnes of the 6,500 tonne C&D waste produced every day.

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HC seeks civic bodies’ stand on plea against commercial property tax on lawyers’ offices – ET RealEstate

NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court Wednesday sought response of the three municipal corporations here on a plea by a lawyers’ association challenging commercial property tax on advocates’ offices.

A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan issued notice to the three local bodies — South Delhi Municipal Corporation, East Delhi Municipal Corporation and North Delhi Municipal Corporation — seeking their stand on the petition by the Delhi High Court Bar Association (DHCBA).

The court also asked DHCBA to advise its members to file tax returns for their residential properties.

The petition has challenged the municipal authorities’ decision to treat the use of premises by an advocate as ‘commercial activity’ and impose taxes accordingly.

The plea, filed by DHCBA through its President Mohit Mathur and Secretary Abhijat, has challenged an assessment order passed by SDMC in November 2018 and any other notice issued thereafter by the three MCDs for self assessment of property tax returns of lawyers offices under provisions of the Delhi Municipal Corporation (DMC) Act.

It has said that under the DMC Act, ‘use factor’ system was introduced in the new method of assessment of property tax and for advocates, there is no specific category but they are being charged on the basis of methods applicable on commercial properties which attract the highest tax.

“All the professionals form one class but the legal profession has been treated as part of commercial activity, which is illegal, arbitrary and contrary to the law laid down by this court,” the plea has said, adding that the office of legal professionals should be ‘use factor’ 1 which is for residential and public purpose.

It has also said that the Bar Council of Delhi sent a representation to the municipal corporations on July 21 for reduction of the ‘use factor’ 4 to 1 for levy of property tax in respect of offices of advocates in Delhi.

‘Use factor’ 4 is for business buildings which attracts the highest tax.

“Lawyers appear before the court to represent their clients but in effect assist the court to dispense justice and this cannot be a business or any commercial activity,” the plea, filed through advocate Nikhil Mehta, has said.

As an interim relief, the plea has sought to stay the operation of november 2018 notice issued by the authorities for self assessment property tax return of the lawyers office.

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Civic bodies in Delhi plan desealing policy for residences – ET RealEstate

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NEW DELHI: The three municipal corporations will soon be coming up with unified guidelines for desealing of residential properties that were recently allowed to be opened by Supreme Court.

The first to benefit would be sealed stilt parking lots, which were deemed misuse and an unauthorised construction by the monitoring committee. Desealing camps would be organised by the civic bodies and no application fee would be charged for the purpose. This was announced by the three mayors and Delhi BJP Adesh Gupta on Friday.

The mayor of North Delhi Municipal Corporation, Jai Prakash, said that Supreme Court had given clarity on the jurisdiction of the monitoring committee.

“We will deseal all residential properties that were not used for commercial purposes. A simplified process will be rolled out and owners will not have to pay the Rs 1 lakh application fee, which was mandatory earlier. We will be setting a time limit within which officials will have to act. After that, the properties will be deemed desealed,” he added. There are around 2,800 such properties under north corporation.

East corporation mayor Nirmal Jain said every zonal executive engineer would be made the nodal officer for the process. “There are 559 sealed properties in Shahdara South zone and 274 in Shahdara North. The commissioner has been asked to simplify the procedure of desealing,” he added.

Anamika Singh, SDMC mayor, said the process of gathering data had been initiated. “A scheme will soon be launched. A common policy will soon be unveiled in consultation with law officers and the Delhi BJP leadership,” she added.

Gupta, who was a former mayor of north corporation, said that since the beginning Delhi BJP had opposed the monitoring committee doing work outside its jurisdiction. “The monitoring committee was formed to prevent commercialisation of residential areas and to check misuse of government land. Around 6,000 residential properties will benefit from desealing,” he added.

Former Delhi BJP president and MP Manoj Tiwari said for the last 10-12 years arbitrary sealing was troubling the public. He added, “We fought sealing and apprised Supreme Court about the problems being faced by people. As a result, the court said that the sealing done in residential areas was unjustifiable.”

Vishal Ohri, general secretary of Local Shopping Centre Federation, said their shops had been lying sealed despite them paying the application fee and conversion charges. “We hope that the court will also review sealing carried out in local shopping centres,” he added.

Supreme Court, while ordering desealing of residential properties, had clarified that its order did not “at all mean to belittle the yeomen service done by the monitoring committee for protection of Delhi”.

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