Renewal of building No Objection Certificate in limbo - The New Indian Express

Renewal of building No Objection Certificate in limbo

Published: 30th October 2013 08:29 AM

Last Updated: 30th October 2013 03:42 PM

The state government’s new order to renew No Objection Certificate (NOC) issued by the local bodies every year for building construction is yet to take off in the city. Though the order was issued two months ago, the practicality of implementing the order is causing delay.

Confirming the fact, the Kochi Corporation officials said that they have not received any notification from the Fire and Rescue Service Department which is supposed to undertake the preliminary inspection of the buildings.     Earlier, the party had to obtain a NOC from the authorities concerned but as per the new rule, the parties have to approach the Fire and Rescue Service Department when the latter intimates them about the inspection and renew their NOC. The sources with the Fire and Rescue Service Department said that though they have sent intimations to many, most have asked for a 30- day time.

“Seeking more time is definitely to put off the inspection for the process only needs a maximum of three days. The party has to pay a fees of `2,000. After submitting the necessary documents, they need to fix a date with us to undertake the inspection,” they said.

The sources noted that many buildings are operating without the necessary requirements and would need to make changes if the order is executed. Besides, there is lobby to ensure that everything is available when the Fire and Rescue Service team arrives for the inspection. The lobby would keep everything ready in the building only to be removed and  shifted to other buildings. Though we know about it, action cannot be taken against them as we do not have concrete details. In such a scenario, it would be foolish to think that people will comply with the new directive,” they pointed out.

 Kochi Corporation Secretary P M Francis confirmed that they did not get any tip-off by the Fire and Rescue Service Department. “Considering their negligible strength, it is a Herculean task to inspect all the buildings in the city. They do not have enough men to tackle emergency situations and this additional task is a burden on them,” he said.

 To give an NOC for a building, huge tanks should be set up both above and below the building and it should be ensured that water reaches all the floors. A sprinkler system should be in place to address fire mishaps as it would operate on its own and spray water to extinguish the fire. A smoke detector would detect the presence of smoke in the building. Life escape stairs and roads leading to these buildings are a prerequisite. “It is an open secret that most of the buildings are operating without these prerequisites and if any building has them, it must have been there only during the inspection,” they pointed out.

 However, Abdul Rasheed, Assistant divisional officer, refuted it and said “It is wrong to say that the directive is not implemented. We have send notifications to many and few of them have already responded.”

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