04 Jun 2018  |   05:55am IST

Velsao gram sabha resolves to revoke licence to hotel project

Villagers grill panchayat member for issuing licence to a builder; Repentant sarpanch offers to quit
Velsao gram sabha resolves to  revoke licence to hotel project

Team Herald

VASCO: Amidst high voltage drama and chaos, the Velsao-Pale-Issorcim gram sabha on Sunday unanimously resolved that the construction licence issued to a builder for its proposed 140 room hotel project should be revoked after initiating legal steps and panchayat should ensure that the ongoing works at the site are stopped immediately.

Tempers flared moments after the gram sabha commenced discussion on the issue of hotel project in the village. Angry gram sabha members literarily grilled the sarpanch, the secretary and other panchas for issuing construction license to the hotel project.

They even presented point wise reply as to why and how the panchayat can use its powers to revoke the construction licence issued to the project proponent. At some point of time, the villagers said that the panchayat body betrayed them by issuing the licence. To this Velsao Sarpanch Henrique D’Mello even offered to resign from his post.

The gram sabha members pointed out that while the construction licence showed that the project is proposed in settlement zone, however, the Regional Plan 2021 clearly shows that part of the project area as orchard, and therefore the construction licence and the technical clearance order issued to the project proponent is in gross and blatant violation of the Regional Plan 2021.

They also raised questions on the validity of approvals given by GCZMA (valid for 5 years) and said that since the CRZ clearance was issued on June 19, 2006, the CRZ clearance expired on June 18, 2011 and therefore all the permissions granted thereafter on the basis of the CRZ clearance, including the construction licence are void.

“The project site includes sand dunes (CRZ-I) and water bodies and is therefore in violation of CRZ-I regulations and the conditions imposed in the permissions granted by other authorities not to interfere with water bodies. Also TCP’s technical clearance to the project in gross violation of the circulars and orders of the Chief Town Planner and the High Court order of writ petition No 372 of 2009 dated June 11, 2010. As per HC order the required road width should exist on the site at the time of the grant of the Technical Clearance. Though the project proponent has falsely stated in his application that the access to the project is by a 10 metre road, the existing road on the site is less than 6 m in width. The construction licence issued to the project on the basis of the illegal technical clearance is therefore void,” a gram sabha member said.

While passing the resolution against the proposed hotel project, Velsao Sarpanch Henrique D’Mello said, “Panchayat is with the people and hence we will follow the resolution against the hotel project. To revoke the construction license we will take legal opinion and act.”

IDhar UDHAR

IDHAR UDHAR