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Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

The Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) has decided to refund excess compound fees of residents in the Capital City by December 31 this year under the revised amnesty scheme.

 As per the latest notification issued by BDA, the residents will only be charged with the amount of fees fixed during the new amnesty scheme in 2019 which allows them to regularise their unauthorised constructions.

 “The excess amount will be refunded to the residents of Bhubaneswar by December 31 and the process has already been started. The residents, who have paid an excess amount of money towards compound fees under the amnesty scheme, could submit their applications with necessary documents till December 10, 2021 to get the refunds,” the notification read.

BDA has further asked the applicants to submit the necessary forms with application number and calculation sheet to be eligible for refund.

“The building owners to be covered under the amnesty scheme should also apply for compliance. As most of the applicants have not applied for compliance, the deadline for the process has been extended further for 15 days till December 15. No more applications will be accepted beyond the due date,” the notification further read.

Moreover, BDA has also notified for sale deed for land distribution and providing lease of houses. Following a review meeting with General Administration and BDA, lease of houses will be provided to the worthy applicants.

“Some persons have not yet applied to get a refund of their excess compound fees. However, we have set a target to refund the fees by December 31 anyway,” said BDA Vice-Chairman Sanjay Singh.

 Earlier in 2018, the Odisha government had launched the amnesty scheme to regularise unauthorised constructions and projects. Under the scheme, cleared by the Planning and Building Standards Regulations, unauthorised constructions can be regularised by paying specific fees along with submission of building construction plan and fire clearance certificate. As many as 15,000 residents had applied under the scheme.

 However, some residents of Bhubaneswar had moved court complaining against the high amount of fees. The State government reduced the amount of fees in the following year and later decided to refund the excess compound fees.

People from different sections of society in the Capital City have wholeheartedly welcomed the decision.

“People are naturally happy that they will get a refund of their excess compound fees. It was a technical mistake by the BDA which shouldn’t be repeated in future,” said Manonjay Rath, an architect.

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