Haryana government will set up Haryana Pond and Waste Water Management Authority

For water conservation and the underground water table a steady booster dose in the state, the Haryana Government has decided to issue an ordinance for setting up the Haryana Pond and Waste Water Management Authority.The Haryana Cabinet which met under the chairmanship of the Chief Minister, Mr Manohar Lal, here today, approved the draft ordinance for setting up the Authority which would manage all ponds located outside notified forest areas in the state, excluding those having an area of less than 0.5 acre.The Authority would consist of the Chief Minister as Chairperson, Minister In-charge for Irrigation and Water Resources and Minister In-charge for Development and Panchayats as Senior Vice-Chairperson. A person of eminence in the field of water resources management will be appointed Executive Vice-Chairman.Additional Chief Secretaries or Principal Secretaries of Finance Department, Irrigation and Water Resources Department, Development and Panchayats Department, Rural Development Department, Urban Development Department, Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Department, Vice Chancellor, Deenbandhu Chhotu Ram University of Science and Technology, Murthal, and Director, National Institute of Technology, Kurukshetra, would be the members.
An officer in the rank of Engineer-in-Chief or equivalent in Irrigation and Water Resources Department or Public Health Engineering Department of the State or Central Government would be appointed Technical Advisor. It will have two non-official members from amongst experts or social workers in the field of environment and ecology or pond development and conservation.

An officer in the rank of Chief Engineer or equivalent in Irrigation and Water Resources Department or Public Health Engineering Department or Development and Panchayats of the State or Central Government would be appointed Member Secretary.The District Consultation and Monitoring Committee will be headed by Chairman, Zila Parishad. The committee in each district would consist of the Additional Deputy Commissioner-cum-Chief Executive Officer, District Rural Development Agency, Superintending Engineers of Irrigation and Water Resources Department and Public Health Engineering Department, the District Development and Panchayat Officer, the Deputy Director, Department of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, the District Horticulture Officer, the District Forest Officer and District Fisheries Officer.

It will also have two non-official members, including one from among experts or social workers in the field of environment and ecology or ponds development and conservation. The District Pond Management Officer would be the Convener.Village Pond and Waste Water Management Committee will be set up at village level to carry out the objects of this Ordinance. The committee shall be headed by the Sarpanch and shall consist of village level workers that is members from Village Water and Sanitation Committee (VWSC), Asha worker, member of self-help group, Swachhta Doot, representative of farmers to be benefitted and other volunteer social worker from village.
The Authority would include survey and study, regulations, control, protection, conservation, reclamation, regeneration, restoration, construction, environmental impact assessment and planning, evolving integrated plan for development of ponds, removal of encroachment of ponds, use of pond water for cattle, fire fighting, education or tourism and utilization of pond water and treatment thereof wherever required.
It will also look at utilization of pond water and affluent of sewage treatment plants for the purpose of irrigation by developing infrastructure such as pumping machinery, channels and pipe system.

No person will construct any structure on pond land, green belt and catchment area, occupy any pond land or part thereof or cause any obstruction in the natural or normal course of inflow or outflow of water into or from the pond on the upstream or down-stream without permission of the Authority.The Ordinance also prohibits activities such as dumping of debris, municipal or industrial solid wastes, mud or earth soil into and around pond, green belt or catchment areas, discharge untreated municipal waste or industrial effluent into the pond directly or indirectly, construct roads, bridges or other structures within the pond area, including the pond bund, without permission of the Authority.
None would breach bund, waste weir, including lowering or raising the height of the waste weir from its original height or remove fence, boundary stones or any hoarding or any signboard erected by the Authority; and do any other act which is detrimental directly or indirectly to the pond.Nothing in this Ordinance prohibits the Authority from redefining water uses of ponds or STP treated effluent from time to time. The Authority may grant permission for any of the above prohibited uses, in public interest.The ownership of land of ponds of various departments of the state government would vest in the Authority. But if and where the land of the pond is in the name of the Gram Panchayat, it will continue to be in the name of the Gram Panchayat.Every authority would consult the Authority before preparing spatial or development plan of any area comprising a pond and no spatial or development plan in respect of an area comprising a pond would be approved or enforced without prior approval of the Authority.
No person will undertake any activity, whatsoever, within the boundary of the pond.

Penalty for contravention-
Those who violate provisions of Sections 14, 16 or 18 will be liable for fine not exceeding Rs 25,000 or imprisonment not exceeding three months, or both.
Penalty for causing obstruction-
Those who will obstruct the Gram Panchayat, District Pond Management Officer or any person acting under the orders or directions of the Authority, from exercising powers, discharging function or performing duties under this Ordinance or the rules made thereunder; or damages any work or property of the Authority; or destroys, pulls down, removes, injures or defaces any pillar, post or stake fixed in the ground or any notice or other matter put up, inscribed or placed, by or under the directions of the Authority, will be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding Rs 10,000 or imprisonment not exceeding one month or both.
Enhanced penalty for subsequent offence

If any person, who has been convicted of any offence under Section 21 is again found guilty of an offence involving contravention of the same provision, will, on the second and on every subsequent conviction, be liable to a fine not exceeding Rs 50,000 or imprisonment, not exceeding six months or both.
Chandigarh, May 30—While unauthorized commercial constructions in Haryana are in for one-time relief, illegal conversions from residential to commercial in core areas are set to get a window for getting these regularized. But the one-time relief on both counts will not be a blanket one, and shall be subject to certain riders.
The Haryana Cabinet which met under the Chairmanship of the Chief Minister, Mr Manohar Lal, here today approved a policy for grant of one-time relief to unauthorized commercial constructions and regularization of illegal conversions from residential to commercial in core areas.
The policy has been framed to provide one-time relief so that unauthorized commercial construction is brought into conformity with the Building Code and relevant Acts or Rules and regularization of illegal conversion. It has two parts. Part-A is related to granting relief to the unauthorized construction and Part-B relates to regularization of illegal conversion from residential to commercial in core areas.
The concept of granting relief to unauthorized commercial construction in Part-A makes it clear that the policy will not be a blanket regularization policy, but a policy under which relief will be provided only if applied.Regularization of unauthorized commercial construction will be permitted for only 10 years and within these years, the applicant will have to construct or rectify his building as per the building bye-law or code. The department will prepare an IT-based platform to record all submitted information on unauthorized commercial construction and prepare a complete database on central server, integrated with the software, which will scrutinize the building plans and prepare report on violations. The report will be provided to the applicant who has to rectify construction within the given span of 10 years.

Responsibility of municipality:
Other than applied cases, municipalities will upload data related to all applied/ approved/rejected building plans cases (till date) along with additional geographical information in the data base, so that the same will be followed up on the online system for compliance of applicable rules, payment of pending fee/ charges and obtaining of Occupation Certificate. The system will also issue notices with reference to applied cases for compliance.
Along with certified unauthorized building plans, the municipalities will initiate preparation of existing land use plan of core/ old area showing residential, commercial, institutional, industrial, transport, open/ green space and any other land use (if required) with the purpose to know the existing situation.
The municipality, if required, may divide the core/ old areas into several blocks for the purpose of re-development/ planning of same and will analyse the extent of unauthorized construction within the blocks or core/old areas and prepare a re-development scheme/ plan for the same.
The re-development plan of block or core area will include widening of the existing street by acquiring land from the existing plots by offering additional FAR/ exemption from property tax/ awarding compensation/ any other viable offer for de-congesting streets and providing light and ventilation and green spaces in core areas.
The municipality shall improvise its enforcement and planning mechanism by appointing staff and other technological measures such as, online scrutiny system, which will also act as an enforcement system and shall keep issuing timely notices/ reminders to applicants and notification to MC officials; creation of additional posts of enforcement staff like building inspectors, municipal engineers, architects and urban planner, will get sanctioned from the government on the basis of population of municipality/ urban area that is:
i. For Every 20,000 population – 1 Building inspector and 1 Municipal Engineer.
ii. For every 50,000 population – 1 Assistant Architect, 1 Assistant Town Planner, 1-SDE.
iii. For Every 1,00,000 Population – 1 Architect, 1 Deputy Town Planner, 1 Executive Engineer.
iv. For every 3,00,000 Population – 1 Senior Architect, 1 Chief Town Planner, 1 Senior Town Planner, 1 Chief Engineer and 1 Superintending Engineer.
v. Similarly other posts shall be categorized.

The concept regarding regularization of illegal conversion from residential to commercial in the area of municipal towns in Part-B included that the policy will permit conversion only if the applicant applies with written request along with applicable scrutiny fee, conversion charges, and any other charges specified by the Council of Ministers.
The conversion of plots is permitted only if the said plot has not been subdivided from original size or being used for multiple purposes that is residential, commercial and institutional. All such applications will be submitted only on online system developed by the department vide which data of such conversions will be kept in record.
This record will help municipalities to know the extent of conversions in a given locality, vide which the extent of up-gradation of infrastructure required will be assessed and converting existing spaces (such as park in residential area) into underground parking areas with parks over it, plazas and other required spaces needed for commercial establishment (only if more than 60 per cent of plots get converted in commercial).
The municipality will conduct survey of all planned schemes within core areas with reference to total number of illegally converted buildings/ plots to know the extent of conversion in planned scheme and based on the generated data, shall permit conversion and will get the generated data on online system. Based on that it shall issue notice via the system to all concerned who have illegally converted their buildings/ plots either to get it regularized or restore them to original use.
All such planned scheme where more than 60 per cent of plots stand commercially converted, the municipality will re-design common spaces like parks/ community centres/ commercial plots, etc. into underground parking lots to provide for additional parking requirement, central plazas at top along with green breathable spaces.
The municipality will also conduct survey to identify commercial establishments along roads with width less than 9 metres to 6 metres and issue notices via system to all owners of illegally converted plots/ buildings.
Since for permitting commercial conversion on roads between 9 and 6 metres width, the roads shall require to be declared as non-vehicle zone, the municipal committee shall declare such road as non-vehicle street under relevant provision of Municipal Acts.The municipality will ensure that all such declared roads will have all entries and exits sealed for all kinds of motor vehicles (including two-wheelers) by placing concrete columns/ block of height 500 mms and width 150 mms and at placing of 600 mm clear distance from each other.
Such street shall have dedicated pedestrian lane of minimum 2-metre width, 1-metre wide of jogging track, green space for installing trees/ plantation and rest for cyclist movement. Such blocks may be removable at night time to park cars from 9 pm to 6 am.
The municipality will identify spaces (both private/ public) nearby the streets to be declared as non-vehicle streets for converting such spaces as parking lots or breathable spaces like park or water bodies, as per requirement of locality. The municipality will acquire 1.5-metre width of land (in case of planned scheme) and 1 metre for rest of the core areas in lieu of additional Floor Area Ratio to owners for the purpose of decongesting the core areas and to lay additional required services.

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