Landowners who formed the first consortium rue lack of roads

Landowners of Sector 8-B in north-west Delhi, who became the first to form a consortium under Delhi Development Authority’s Land Pooling Policy (LPP), say a big obstacle they’re facing, in terms of attracting real-estate developers to the area, is the lack of connectivity.

“We have been able to pool 100 acres, where around 5,000 flats could be built. However, the developers will get attracted to invest here only if they see some promise in the form of roads,” said Dinesh Rana, a landowner who heads the consortium here.

Sector 8-B comprises two villages — Gadi Khasro and Ibrahimpur, located 20 km from central Delhi. These villages are among the 105 identified by the urban body under the LPP. The policy allows forming of a consortium that can collaborate with a developer entity or plan the development on its own after surrendering 40% of the pooled land to the DDA for public infrastructure works.

To form a consortium, at least 70% of landowners have to agree to pool in their land and 70% of the land needs to be contiguous. However, these two eligibility conditions created roadblocks for the DDA in implementing the LPP, which was notified twice — in 2013 and 2018.

To overcome the roadblocks, Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs, Hardeep Singh Puri, in March 2022, announced that conditional notices to form consortiums would be issued to landowners who have expressed interest in the policy, provided they can convince the remaining landowners to pool in their land within a stipulated time. The landowners of Sector 8-B were among those who received a provisional notice. Earlier this week, they became the first to meet both the conditions needed to form a consortium.

Connectivity issues

The nearest metro stations from Gadi Khasro and Ibrahimpur are Samaypur Badli (11 km) and Majlis Park (15 km). However, the area has schools, hospitals and health centres within a 5 km radius, all located near Burari. Currently, most of the land in these two villages is used for agriculture, primarily to cultivate paddy and wheat.

“None of the roads meant to be laid here, as per the Master Plan for Delhi-2021, have been built. This has resulted in a steady flow of encroachments in the form of unauthorised constructions. This will affect the connectivity between the sectors,” said Mr. Rana.

Jamuna Dutt, another landowner in the sector, also said that the DDA must improve connectivity in the area.

Most landowners, who are part of the consortium, believe that the solution to the pending development can be addressed only through proposed amendments to the Delhi Development Act, announced by Mr. Puri last year.

One of the proposed amendments makes land pooling mandatory for the remaining landowners if the minimum participation rate of 70% is achieved. The other amendment grants power to the Centre to declare land pooling mandatory, even if the minimum criteria of 70% participation and 70% contiguity are not achieved.

Responding to the landowners’ observations, a senior DDA official said that demolition drives have been conducted to remove the unauthorised constructions in the area. More such drives are scheduled over the coming weeks.

“Any development in the 105 villages must be done as per the land pooling policy. As for the roads proposed in the master plan, many land portions do not belong to the DDA, as they are privately owned and are yet to be acquired,” the official added.

How pooling works

“The consortium can collaborate with a developer entity or plan the development on its own. First, however, it has to draft and provide us [DDA] with a layout plan, which we will check and approve,” said another senior official.

As per the policy, the DDA will issue a provisional development licence upon issuing the approval.

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