COVID19 lockdown period to be treated as grace period for building permissions

Representational Pic

Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) Saturday said that it will treat COVID19 lockdown months as “grace period” for building construction permissions granted by it in the summer capital.

It added that people, who want to extend validity timeline of approved building permissions, can approach the SMC office. 

Scores of families are worried about the expiry of validity of permissions granted to them for constructions of residential houses and other structures. Similarly, permissions granted to people for commercial construction can also now benefit from the scheme.

Many people had appealed to the SMC to extend the validity of the permissions in view of the COVID19 lockdown which hampered all kinds of constructions. The SMC had banned constructions amid the pandemic.

An official said that SMC commissioner Gazanfar Ali chaired a meeting wherein the pandemic lockdown period were discussed and it decided to treat six months as grace period.

Confirming the development, the SMC Commissioner said that the validity of permissions which have expired has been extended for the next six months.

“People can approach my office or the office of SMC Joint Commissioner Planning for extension of validity of permissions,” he said.

He informed that no fee shall be charged from the applicants, seeking extension of validity, adding, “the lockdown period would be treated as grace period for the building permissions already granted.”   

The SMC had banned all sorts of constructions in March this year among other measures to contain the virus. With the unlocking of COVID19 lockdown, SMC issued a proper Standard Operation Procedure when it resumed work on public projects. The protocol was framed after consultation with experts. Later, the SMC also allowed resumption of private constructions but subject to strict adhering to safety guidelines.