HC upholds validity of Impact Fee
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Acting on a petition, the Gujarat High Court on Thursday upheld the constitutional validity of the recently notified law — The Gujarat Regularisation of Unauthorised Development Act, 2011, popularly known as Impact Fee law — to regularise the unauthorised and illegal developments in the state.
The petition was moved by one Shivlal Purohit contending that the new Act is flagrant violation of Rule of Law in the state and of the directions issued by the HC and the Supreme Court at the relevant time. The court has dismissed the petition while observing that it was devoid of merits.
The petitioner had contended that the state government had brought into practice a similar law in 2001 to ratify the illegal constructions. And when that act was challenged at the HC, the state government had stated on oath that it was a "one time measure" order to give benefit to the people of Gujarat by regularising the unauthorised constructions, which were existing at that point in time and with a view to avoid demolition of illegal structures then.
It was also argued by the petitioner that despite introduction of the Impact Fee law in 2001, regularisation was not resorted to by most builders/owners/occupiers of the illegal and unauthorised constructions and even thereafter there were rampant and innumerable illegal and unauthorised constructions coming up in Gujarat. And these constructions were within the knowledge of the competent authorities and probably existed and came up because of the collusion with the officers of the concerned local authorities in the state.
The petitioner had contended that the inaction by the authorities had given rise to continuing illegalities and clear defiance of the directions by the builders, developers, owners, occupiers, etc. who were intentionally and blatantly defying the directions issued by the HC at the cost of law abiding citizens.
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