SMC demolishes under-construction 'commercial structure' in Bhagat residential area

Representational Pic

After public outcry, Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) Monday demolished an under-construction building at Nawachbagh Bhagat here after finding the structure was being set up in violation of the rules.

The SMC made the move after residents of the area recently staged a protest demonstration against the authorities for “allowing construction of a commercial complex” in the residential area.

An SMC team headed by enforcement officer, Choudhary Mehraj-u-Din Buja reached the spot this afternoon and demolished the building. “We have also seized some equipment from the spot under the rules,” Buja said.

He said the owner of the building was issued permission for construction of residence house earlier. “But later the permission was put in abeyance after locals complained the structure was designed to be used for commercial purpose,” he said.

Buja said the work on building was resumed in violation of rules and therefore the SMC took the action under law.

Another SMC official said that locals continued their resentment through representations and approached office of the Srinagar Mayor and Commissioner SMC, demanding action under law against the violator as construction work had resumed on the building.

The locals had raised objection to the construction of commercial complex, pleading that their rights were being infringed. “Finally, the SMC acted under law,” the official said.

Muhammad Arif Bhat, President of local Mohalla committee Nawichbagh, Mehboob Colony, said the ongoing construction had given all residents sleepless nights.

“We talked to the owner earlier who had assured us that the building is for residential purpose and that he has no intention or plans to use it for any commercial purpose,” Bhat said.

He said after finding violations in the building permission which suggested that the structure was being built for commercial purpose, the locals raised the issue with SMC authorities.

“The building is so tall that it has breached privacy of entire locality. Anyone standing in second floor of the building can have look inside any house in the locality,” he said.