NEW DELHI: Taking a leaf out of former Delhi CM Sheila Dikshit’s 2008 poll plank, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday decided to give ownership rights to about 40 lakh residents of 1,797 unauthorised colonies in the national capital on “as is where is basis”.
The Cabinet decision has given a major boost to the BJP in the upcoming Assembly elections in the national capital where about one-third of the electorate resides.
ALSO READ: Decision on unauthorised colonies timed precisely to reap poll dividend, says Sanjay Kumar
“The Cabinet has omitted 69 unauthorised colonies, including Sainik Farms, Anant Ram Dairy and others, from the list of the 1,797 approved habitations where people from the low-income group resides.
“Residents can get ownership rights of their dwelling units by paying nominal registration charges,” said Hardeep Puri, Union Minister for Urban Affairs. The owners of dwelling units up to the size of 100 sq metre have to pay 0.5 per cent of the prevailing circle rate, while those with 100 to 250 sq metre have to pay one per cent and above size would have to shell out 2.5 per cent.
The ruling NDA would bring a legislation in the upcoming Parliament session to give effect to the Cabinet decision.
Political circles are abuzz that the Election Commission could advance elections in Delhi to coincide with Jharkhand in December.
ALSO READ: BJP, Congress vie for credit after regularisation of unauthorised colonies call in Delhi
With AAP government seen consolidating the vote base among the Poorvanchalis (settlers from Bihar and eastern Uttar Pradesh) with freebies and strong health-education pitch, the BJP is pinning hopes on the Central government to help the party gain an upper hand.
After Dikshit had got the Congress president Sonia Gandhi to distribute provisional regularisation certificates for unauthorised colonies at a rally at Ramlila Ground on the eve of the 2008 polls, the issue had remained stuck in bureaucratic process.
Dikshit wasn’t able to make any forward movement afterwards, while eventually losing the 2013 Assembly elections to the AAP.