Information w.r.t. sewer pipe line etc. was sought – CIC: Appellant has some grievance against the proposed sewer pipe line and wants to establish that the proposed sewer pipe line is illegal for which the CIC is not an appropriate forum
The appellant sought information w.r.t. sewer pipe line above the ground floor roof etc.
Relevant facts emerging during hearing:
Since, all the above mentioned appeals are filed in relation to the same RTI application dated 04.06.2014; therefore, the above appeals are being clubbed together for hearing to avoid multiplicity of the proceedings.
Both parties are present and heard.
The appellant filed an RTI application dt.04.06.2015, seeking the above information. PIO vide reply dated 01.09.2014 informed the appellant about point 1 that information sought pertains to Land & Estate Dept. of Nr. DMC and regarding point 2, PIO stated that the information sought is a clarification which is not covered under the RTI Act. The FAA disposed of the first appeal vide order dated 09.10.2014, upholding the decision of the PIO. Being not satisfied with the response of the public authority, the appellant filed the present appeals before the Commission.
The appellant stated that complete information till date has not been provided to him. He stated that he had sought the information w.r.t. proposed map in which the respondent had proposed the sewer line above the ground floor roof. The respondent from Maintenance dept. stated that the proposed map was made to meet the feasible solution as per the directions of the Hon’ble High Court and requested two weeks time to submit the written submissions in this regard. Respondent from Architecture dept. stated that the information sought does not pertain to them.
After hearing both parties and on perusal of record, both the parties are directed to submit written submission latest by 22.05.2015, clearly stating their stand on the matter, after which the Commission shall pass the final order.
The Registry of this Bench is directed to put up this case before the Bench, latest by 25th May, 2015. Fresh notices for hearing will be issued to both the parties, if desired.
The respondent through written submission dated20.05.2015 stated as follows:
“The erstwhile Municipal Corporation of Delhi developed and constructed residential colony consisting of 640 quarters known as Nimri Colony, Delhi. This colony was constructed under the Low Income Group Housing Scheme after taking loan from the Delhi Administration. While quarters bearing Nos. 1 to 324 were allotted to the Municipal employees in terms of the resolution of the corporation bearing No. 447 dated 20.09.1966, flats bearing Nos. 325 to 604 were sold on “No Profit No Loss Basis”.
The remaining flats bearing Nos. 605 to 640 were allocated on licence fee basis to those persons who were evicted from public land, pursuant to and in compliance of the Corporation’s Resolution No. 320 dated 02.09.1969. Flats bearing Nos. 1 to 324 were in possession of the Municipal employee’s right from inception of construction thereof but the Corporation on account of legal impediments could not transfer the ownership rights to the residents/occupants of Nimri Colony. As a result of this, sometimes in the year 1972, a Writ Petition came to be filed in Hon’ble Supreme Court of India (i.e. CWP 203/72) regarding sale and transfer of ownership rights of the flats in question. During the pendency of the aforesaid writ petition, Municipal Corporation of Delhi passed a Resolution No. 924 dated 15th February, 1984 relating to transfer of ownership rights in the said Municipal quarters on “No Profit No Loss” basis to the then allottees/authorised occupants of those quarters. The writ petition was allowed by the Hon’ble High Court on 12.12.1984 directing the Resolution dated 15th February, 1984 be acted upon without any delay. The LPA/SLP filed against the order dated 12.12.1984 by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi was dismissed on 30.09.1985 and 31.08.1988.
It is pertinent to mention that the loan for construction of approximately 968 tenements, Nimri Colony was granted by the Government of India. However, in the scheme total number of tenements to be built was approximately 968 in the Nimri Colony. Out of these, based on availability of funds, only 640 quarters were built in the first instance of which 1 to 324 were transferred to the municipal employees and 325 to 640 to private persons on hire purchase basis in terms of the conditions of the loan granted for implementation of the scheme having clear directions in the scope of the administrative sanction of the said scheme that the houses built under the said scheme must be sold out or on hire purchase basis to cooperative or individuals. State Government cannot continue to be the permanent owners and rent these houses.
It is further submitted that the Corporation vide Resolution No. 924 dated 15.02.1984 considered the above position brought out by the Commissioner in his letter no. F.33/L&F/7702/C&C dated 17.11.1983 and the recommendations made by the Standing Committee vide Resolution No. 572 dated 23.12.1983, Municipal quarters at Nimri Colony be sold to the present allottees/authorised occupants of these quarters at market value of 1974 which has already been calculated in the case of 11 quarters of Nimri Colony sold to the authorised occupants and on the same terms and conditions as contained in the Corporation’s Resolution No. 937 dated 9/2/1979.
It is worthwhile to mention that the Lt. Governor directed the Corporation to rescind the Resolution dated 4/12/1970, 25/4/1972, 31/7/1973, 21/12/1988 and 4/10/1989 except in so far as they related to part of Nimri Colony. The proposal was accordingly moved by the Commissioner on 21/-3/1990 for rescinding the aforesaid resolution except so far as they related to part of Nimri Colony on 22/03/1990 due to the reason that the original scheme for construction of Nimri Staff Quarters has a clear stipulation in the scope that the Corporation cannot continue to be permanent owner and rent these houses.
It is further submitted that in the year 1994 a Writ Petition bearing No. 3587/1994 – Upper Flats Residents Association Vs MCD seeking removal of encroachment was filed in the Delhi High Court and the erstwhile Municipal Corporation of Delhi decided to compound the encroachments up to 100 Sq. metres, from the existing 62.26 Sq.mtrs vide Corporation Resolution No. 386 of 2000 on deposition of compounding fee @ Rs.2, 30,663/-.In the present case i.e., Upper Flat Residents Association & others Vs. MCD(CWP No. 3587/1994), the Hon’ble High Court of Delhi vide decision dated 19.1.2012 passed directions “For this purpose, MCD shall take necessary exercise by preparing layout plans/designs and earmark the areas from where these pipelines can now be laid. Engineers of MCD for this purpose survey the area and complete the necessary exercise within a period of three months and provide those drawings to the petitioners. MCD shall also ensure that when the upper flat owners re-lay the pipelines on the basis of revised layout plans prepared by the MCD, ground floor owners shall cooperate and shall not cause any hindrance and if needed, police assistance can also be taken. MCD while preparing the said layout plans, may take the help and cooperation of Delhi Jal Board if required and on MCD approaching Delhi Jal Board, it shall extend all cooperation”, and the Writ Petition was disposed off.
Matter was again listed before the Hon’ble Court on 16.1.2013 before Hon’ble Justice G.S. Sistani. The Court directed to hold a meeting between the representatives of the petitioners and EE(M-IV)CLZ on 16.2.2013 at 2.30 P.M. and prior to this meeting the site shall be inspected jointly by the representatives and concerned staff on 2.2.2013 at 11 AM.As per the directions of Hon’ble Court a meeting was held at site on 2.2.2013 in the presence of the undersigned along with concerned Asstt. Engineer, Jr. Engineer from MCD & concerned staff of Delhi Jal Board and the petitioner along with his architect and subsequently the meeting was held in the office of the undersigned on 16.2.2013 and as per the directions of Hon’ble Court, the drainage system was handed over to the Plaintiff on 23.03.2013.
MCD had apprised the Hon’ble High Court of Delhi on 24.10.2013 vide O.M. No. 5054/2013 that the Orders of Hon’ble Court dated 19.01.2012 could not be put into action as large number of residents of Nimri Colony has given in writing to Executive Engineer that the existing sewerage system is not creating any problem to them. However, the Hon’ble Court has directed on 24.10.2013 that since the present petitioner has a definite grievance and wants Orders dated 19.01.2012 to be implemented in letter and spirit. The petition was disposed of on the statement of Ld. Counsel appearing on behalf of New Delhi Municipal Corporation that the Orders will be put into action and implemented within 4 weeks. As per the directions of Hon’ble Court, the undersigned along with concerned staff inspected the site on 24.11.2013. However, the petitioner was not available at the site. The petitioner attended the office of undersigned on 26.11.2013 and urged for “to stick on the decision to demolish the bathroom at ground floor as ultimate solution” and urged to be present again in the office of the undersigned with the architect in a short time with prior intimation, which he never complied with. A reminder was sent to the petitioner to attend office of undersigned with the architect vide letter No. EE (M-IV) CLZ/2013-14/D-1027 dated 16.12.2013 but did not got any response from the petitioner.
To comply with the order of Hon’ble Court dated 24.10.2013, the undersigned sent the drawing showing the sewerage/drainage plan to the petitioner by post vide No.(MIV) CLZ/2013-14/D-1158 dated 16.01.2014.”
The appellant through written submission dated 13.05.2015 stated as follows:
“1.That the brief facts of the case are that the appellant is the owner of Upper Flat bearing No.354, First Floor, Nimri Colony, Ashok Vihar, Delhi-52 which flats were allotted for the area measuring 62.26 sq.meter each along with footpath and service lane in front side and back side.
2.That the occupier of the ground floor flat No.353, Ground Floor, Nimri Colony, AshokVihar, Delhi-52 encroached the public land and illegally extended the area of his flat and constructed a room as a result of which the sewer pipe line of the applicant was blocked by him.
3. That the act of the owner of the ground floor flat of encroaching the public land and carrying out the huge illegal construction is against the violation of the D.M.C. Act and other applicable laws and the said encroachment is not protected through any Delhi Special Provision Act or any other bye-laws and cannot be regularized and the said encroachment cannot be protected by the competent authority through any manner.
4. That thereafter the appellant came to know that a writ petition No.3587/94 was filed by the Upper Flats Residential Association in which the Hon'ble Mr.JusticeY.K.Sabharwal, vide order dated 15.5.1995 passed the order for the removal of the unauthorized construction and encroachment over the public land by the occupiers of the ground floor flats of the same area at Neemri Colony. The copy of the said order dated 15.5.1995 is annexed herewith as Annexure-A.
5.That it is pertinent to mention here that thereafter to defeat the order passed by the Hon'ble High Court the occupiers of the ground floor who have illegal encroached the service lane and footpath after raising the illegal constructed have conspired with the officials of the M.C.D. as a result of which the M.C.D. submitted the resolution dated 25.9.2000 vide Resolution No.386 before the Hon'ble Court in which they recommended to permit the occupiers of ground floor who have extended their area upto 100 sq.meters on a plot area of 135 sq.meters. But the Hon'ble High Court vide order dated 12.9.2007 specifically mentioned that they have not accepted the resolution. Despite of this the officials of the M.C.D. in the garb of the resolution are protecting the occupiers of the ground floor flat owners of Neemri Colony. The said resolution dated 25.9.2000 is annexed herewith as Annexure-B and copy of order of the Hon'ble High Court dated 12.9.2007 is also annexed herewith as Annexure-C.
6.That as the appellant was effecting party therefore he made an application in the said writ petition and become the party as his sewer pipe line was blocked by the ground floor owner of flat No.353, Neemri Colony, Delhi after constructing a room by encroaching the service lane and obstruct the sewer line main hole of the appellant.
7.That thereafter the Hon'ble High Court vide order dated 19.1.2012 put the question whether the necessary exercise by preparing layout plans from these pipe line now be lead the Engineer of M.C.D. for this purpose survey the area and complete the necessary exercise within a period of three months. The said order dated 19.1.2012 is annexed herewith as Annexure-D. 8.That thereafter in compliance of the said order dated 19.1.2012 the site of the appellant was inspected by the team of experts officials of the M.C.D. and N.D.M.C., Delhi Jal Board and other concerning officials and they given the following opinion on 19.2.2013:- “During the inspection of flat No.354, it was found that some temporary construction was construction over the main hole which is required to be demolished for providing proper shaft" The photocopy of the said letter dated19.2.2013 is annexed herewith as Annexure-E.
9. That despite the above said inspection and opinion to the effect that the illegal construction is required to be demolished on ground floor, the Executive Engineer of the M.C.D. has supplied the proposed sewerage system plan in respect of the flat in question on 16.1.2014 in which he suggested to take the sewer pipeline measuring 57 ft. without any hole over the ground floor which is practically impossible. The said site plan is already on record.
10. That to prove the conspiracy between the occupier of ground floor and M.C.D. officials, and to prove that the said proposed plan is not fit, the appellant filed an R.T.I. application addressed to Chief Architect, North M.C.D. whether the sewer pipe line shown in the said proposed site plan by Executive Engineer on 16.1.2014 is correct and approved by the building bye-laws and another information was sought from the Commissioner, North M.C.D., "Can footpath and back servicelane encroachment be regularized in Neemri Colony, Delhi. But the appellant has not received the proper reply from both the Public Information, Officers. Then the appellant was compelled to file the first appeal but before the First Appellate Authority the officials of the North M.C.D. also mislead the First Appellate Authority and in the garb of the pending writ petition before the Hon'ble High Court, they did not supply the correct and exact information even in First Appeal.
11. Feeling aggrieved by the order in the first appeal the appellant has preferred the second appeal before this Hon'ble Authority.
12. That even in the present second appeal the respondent is taking the same plea of pending writ petition and in the shadow of the writ petition they are not .supplying the sought information till date. It is pertinent to mention here that the respondents are also misleading the Hon'ble High Court as well asthuis Hon'ble Authority because even as per their public notice dated 12.2.2015, they are still allotting the flats of the same original size of 62.26 sq.yds. in Neemri Colony, Delhi but on the other hand they are misleading by putting the resolution dated 25.9.2000 in which they recommended to permit the occupiers of ground floor who have extended their area upto 100 sq.meters on a plot area of 135 sq.meters. But the Hon'ble High Court vide order dated 12.9.2007 specifically mentioned that Hon'ble High Court has not accepted the resolution. Despite of this on the pretext of the said writ petition, the respondent are not providing the correct information for the reason best known to them. The copy of the said public notice dated 12.2.2015 is annexed herewith as Annexure-F.
13. From the above said submissions, it iscrystal clear that the respondent intentionally do not want to provide the sought information despite the fact that there is no any bar either from any court or from any other department to provide the sought information to the appellant but despite that they are not doing the needful and the question may be put to the respondent that why they are avoiding to give the 'simple information and why they are confusing the appellant and even this Hon'ble Authority and why they are protecting the occupiers of the ground floor flat owners of Neemri Colony. It is, therefore, respectfully prayed that the above said submissions may kindly be considered and the respondents may strictly be directed to give the sought information to the appellant without any further delay and heavy penalty may kindly be imposed upon the respondent under R.T.I. Act.”
After perusal of submission of the parties the Commission finds that the appellant has some grievance against the proposed sewer pipe line and want to establish that the proposed sewer pipe line is not correct or illegal for which the Commission is not an appropriate forum. Through the RTI application, he has sought information whether the proposed sewer pipeline through his house is in order or not. This matter has already been extensively dealt with by the Honourable Delhi High Court in compliance of whose order; MCD had sent the drawing plan to the appellant on 16.01.2014. The appellant on the other hand has insisted on demolition of bathroom at ground floor as the ultimate solution. Since, the Honourable Delhi High Court has already given directions in the matter, the Commission refrains from commenting on the subject. Information, however, as sought by the appellant has been provided by the respondent authority as mentioned above.
Another appeal bearing no. CIC/YA/A/2014/002879 relating to same issue is also disposed of vide this order. Appeals are disposed of accordingly.
Citation: Shri Harminder Singh v. North Delhi Municipal Corporation in F.No.CIC/YA/A/2014/002860 F.No. CIC/YA/A/2014/002861 F.No. CIC/YA/A/2014/002965 F.No. CIC/YA/A/2014/002879