Complaints of illegal construction and unauthorised buildings in the East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) zone have been rising as inaction of engineers from the EDMC have led to a rampant increase in such irregularities.

R.R. Verma, general secretary of the Residents’ Welfare Association of Yamuna Vihar in East Delhi, said that he had made several complaints to the EDMC regarding encroachment on the DDA land in Yamuna Vihar’s Block C. Verma told The Sunday Guardian, “We had approached the EDMC’s Superintendent Engineer (Buildings) with complaints that illegal buildings were being built on government land in our area. We had also filed an RTI, but did not get any positive response from them. We had also attached photographs with our complaints, but all of this has only fallen on deaf ears of the officers in EDMC.”

Anil Dutt Sharma, another complainant, had also brought the unauthorised construction in East Delhi’s Dilshad Garden area to the EDMC’s notice. He said: “When the first unauthorised construction started on a property at D-248 in Dilshad Garden, I had made several complaints to the Deputy Commissioner and other senior officers of the EDMC, but they did not take appropriate action at the appropriate stage. Now, several such unauthorised buildings have come up in the area.”

When repeated complaints failed to elicit any action from the EDMC, the complainants approached the Public Grievance Commission (PGC) in Delhi to look into the matter.

When the PGC convened its hearing in the matter, it asked the EDMC to submit an Action Taken Report (ATR) on the complaints separately.

The ATR submitted by the EDMC on R.R. Verma’s complaint stated that the property stated in the complaint was not traceable and the complainant was asked to furnish the correct details. However, on this, N. Dilip Kumar, member PGC, said, “The complainant had submitted the photos of the five-storied building under construction. Since an RTI had also been filed on the matter, it is in the knowledge of the Deputy Commissioner of EDMC. This indicates a case of corruption and conspiracy on the part of the junior engineer, the builder and the area engineer.” He also transferred this case to the Anti-Corruption Branch, Delhi, for further investigation.

The complaints of Anil Dutt Sharma, who had alleged illegal construction in several plots in Dilshad Garden, has been transferred to the CBI and the Vigilance Department. N. Dilip Kumar said, “From the records and photographs submitted by the complainant, it is clear that he has complained an umpteen number of times. It is also on record that the police had made several complaints to the EDMC regarding illegal constructions in the past two years. Thus it is a very clear case of connivance of the engineers of the EDMC and needs to be thoroughly investigated by the CBI.”

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