ITPI JOURNAL 4 : 1 (2007) 37 - 43


Chief Urban Planner and Member, CMDA; Chairman ITPI TNRC, Chennai ABSTRACT After setting the discussion in the context of the national debate on unauthorized constructions and misuse of premises, this paper provides a comprehensive discussion on development control rules and building byelaws of Tamilnadu. The author provides critical commentary on the planning and other related statutes, and assesses their impact in controlling and regulating unauthorized constructions and misuse of premises. The author proposes - consolidation of all related organizations under the control of an umbrella organization for effective implementation of building byelaws and regulation of development control rules.



Construction programmes are interwoven in a large measure in all sectors of development including housing, transport, industry, irrigation, power, agriculture, education or health. Construction, both public and private, accounts for about fifty percent of the total outlay in any Plan. Half of the total money spent on construction activities is spent on buildings for residential, industrial, commercial, administrative, educational, medical, and municipal and entertainment uses. It is estimated that about half of the total outlay on buildings would be on housing. In the 4th FiveYear Plan, out of, Rs.1, 560 billion, about Rs.780 billion would be spent on construction generally, of which about Rs.390 billion would be on buildings of various types and occupancies. It is imperative that for such a large national investment, optimum returns are assured and wastage in construction is avoided. Soon after the Third Plan, the Planning Commission decided that the whole gamut of operations involved in construction, such as administrative, organizational, financial and technical aspects, be studied in depth. For this study, the Planning Commission appointed a Panel of Experts in 1965 and its recommendations are found in the ‘Report on Economies in Construction Costs’ published in 1968. One of the facets of building construction, namely, controlling and regulating buildings through municipal byelaws and departmental handbooks received the attention of the Panel and a study of these regulatory practices revealed that some of


the prevailing methods of construction are outmoded; some designs are overburdened with safety factors and there are other design criteria which, in the light of newer techniques and methodologies, could be rationalized; and building byelaws and regulations of municipal bodies which largely regulate the building activity in the country wherever they exist, were outdated. They did not cater to the use of new building materials and the latest developments in building designs and construction techniques. It also became clear that these codes and byelaws lacked uniformity and they were more often than not ‘specification oriented’ and not ‘performance oriented’. These studies resulted in a recommendation that a National Building Code be prepared to unify the building regulations throughout the country for use by government departments, municipal bodies and other construction agencies. The Planning Commission with the preparation of the National Building Code entrusted the Indian Standards Institution. For fulfilling this task a Guiding Committee for the preparation of the Code was set up by the Civil Engineering Division Council in 1967. This Committee, in turn, set up 18 specialist panels to prepare the various parts of the Code. The Guiding Committee and its panels were constituted with architects, town planners, materials experts, structural, construction, and electrical illumination, air-conditioning, acoustics and public health engineers. These experts were drawn from the Central and State Governments, local bodies, professional institutions and private

doctors’ clinics and nursing homes limited to the requirements of each locality. institutional facilities for providing value added education should be allowed to operate from residential areas. to operate from residential areas. The National Building Code is a single document in which. etc. as long as they are not seen to be causing inconvenience to the general public. may be permitted to operate from residential zones with limited floor area and adequate parking facility. There is a need for a “grass-roots-up” planning system for the city rather than a “top-down” system. the concerned traders may be allowed to ply their trades from existing locations under a flexible land use policy. Basements may be permitted for professional use. Since building materials. steel. Residents. since their services are provided either for a particular area or a part thereof and they cannot run their cables over long distances from any commercial complex. India aims to become knowledge super-power. from other than merely for parking and servicing the building with the co-users acceptance. Keeping in view the paucity of accommodation for tourists. safety and development control are being complied with. subject to general public convenience not being jeopardized. Qualified registered town planners should make the latter subject to certification that the overall building norms vis-à-vis health. dispensaries. The first version of the Code was published in 1970. The process of preparation of the Code had thrown up a number of problems. Inherent planning capacity has to keep pace with the modern developments. Involve stakeholders in a meaningful way.K. Use of Ground floor for commercial purpose should be allowed on “as is where is” basis. would be incorporated in to the Code from time to time to make it a living document. An overall Central Parking Authority should be created for overseeing development of parking complexes throughout the city. All of them should be compulsorily registered and the registration of defaulters should be cancelled. the information contained in various Indian Standards is woven into a pattern of continuity and cogency with the interdependent requirements of sections carefully analysed and fitted to make the whole document a cogent continuous volume. Therefore. 2 MAGNITUDE OF UNAUTHORIZED CONSTRUCTIONS AND MISUSE OF PREMISES Even in the regular planned neighborhoods / colonies. irrespective of the width of the road.M. in itself. Building Code regulations may be liberalized in accordance with the recommendations of V. Malhotra Committee Report of 2000. some of them have been answered fully and some partially. The Code as now published is the second version representing the present state of knowledge on various aspects of building construction. contributes considerably to the economies in construction particularly in building and plumbing services. determined in consultation with the concurrence of the local residents. are needed in all parts of the city. such as marble. This will match the demand and supply of constructed areas for different purposes. Guest Houses and Offices of Registered Tour Operators. The inter-active planning process should actively involve the local community. user’s views over a period of time pinpointing areas of clarification and coverage and results of research in the field. A continuous thread of ‘preplanning’ is woven which. while evolving its plans for the city. Special fast track Courts should be established for setting cases of Building Code violations and stringent punishments should be accorded.43 agencies. Since. need for essential services can be met by selective commercialization for obtaining daily necessities. timber. Institutions providing professional and vocational learning on a decentralized basis may be allowed . Subash chandira / ITPI Journal 4 : 1 (2007) 37 . Periodic updating of byelaws in consultation with end-users is required. a substantial number of violations of 38 It is needless to emphasis that regulations should be substantially simplified by prescribing only “external” controls while freeing internal layout details. Strict action should be taken against builders who violate Building Codes. a continuous programme is envisaged by which additional knowledge that is gained through technological evolution. Cable service providers should be allowed to operate from residential areas.

Special fast track Courts should be established for setting cases of Building Code violations and stringent punishments should be accorded. the sealing episode in Delhi brought to light the imbalanced in demand and supply of area for commercial use.M. consumption pattern. to the study of the composition of the people. Again. • • • Absence of proper standing institutional mechanism for seeking justifiable modifications / relaxations vis-à-vis the existing Building Code and land-use regulations. Any regulation. cultural background. • The Tejendra Khanna Committee Report exposes the planners for their indifferent attitude towards to the needs of various spectrum of the society.come true neighborhoods. which touches the pulse of the people on the above lines. It failed to study and understand the pulse of the 39 Feedback from the public.43 Development Control Norms and Building Byelaws have been noticed. are eye-opener to the physical planner and policy makers. as a result they spill over the roads and violate the When the environment in Delhi was filled with smoke and . Need of the day is to understand the people and draft the rule and not to draft rules for dream. living style. It is more hypocritical and unrealistic or highly optimistic dreaming to achieve such high profile standard. commercial and institutional use. Supply-Side shortages in terms of legitimate spaces for residential. planned to make profit and on service-minded blueprints. The Tejendra Khanna Committee Report not only exposed the lacunae in the land-use planning. etc. Demolition of an Unauthorised Buildings Excessive Floor Area Ratio coverage FAR / FSI. Extension of Building over public streets and other open spaces meant for public utilities. Their basic requirements are not met. earning capacity. The Hawkers Committee constituted by Madras High Court directed the Commissioner of Corporation to identify suitable place for hawker and pavement traders. with projection. Violation of height restriction. Unrealistic and cumbersome regulations including complex Development Control Norms and Building Bye-laws and long drawn approval procedures. no such area earmarked in the modern era. New neighborhoods. and Land use violations The large number of violations involving unauthorized construction and misuse of premises can be attributed to five distinct causes: • • • Failure of the planning and implementation process to take account of ground realities and recast the planning guidelines. will reach the society. their need. They are commercialized. and The old city still has place reserved for markets. people before planning the draft rules. religious need. Subash chandira / ITPI Journal 4 : 1 (2007) 37 . find no place for common-man markets. The shortage is about 82 percent in Delhi. but lack of implementation in a big way. Every Master Plan starts demographic details. Such violations cover one or more of the following breaches: • • • • • • Excessive Ground coverage without leaving mandatory setbacks. urbanization but fails to go further into it. Shortage of parking requirements.

90 48. Table 1 Types of Violation in Chennai Metropolitan Area Type of Violation Plot Violation Residential Nature of violations in multistoried buildings Commercial Violation in % 12. An integrated approach among various agencies will bring out a blueprint to address the urban problems.47 15.M. Commercial Total Violation in % 16. rescue measures clamped by judiciary and when town-planning avenues are based on rails by judiciary activism.4 5.20 40 .55 16.60 44.63 Others Violation in % 41.66 10.35 Violation in % 37.98 15.67 25. • • spectrums of the people only will get a desired result in sustaining the urban system.96 31.31 Road Width Violation Landuse Violation FSI Violation Setback Violation 47.93 2.76 5.68 Source: CMDA Table 2 Types of Violations in CMA in G+3 Buildings Type of Violation Plot Violation Residential Commercial Others Nature of violation in G+3 Buildings Violation in % 3.43 dust.07 Violation in % 16.45 15.65 7.11 49. • • • Flexibility and adoptability to the cultural and socio-economic changes are necessary with out compromising the planning principles. Subash chandira / ITPI Journal 4 : 1 (2007) 37 .Commercial Total Violation in % 42.33 12.36 10.22 26.16 Residential.58 39.16 Residential. and Planning principle insulated with ground reality and understanding the need of the various Alternative planning or upgrading or revising the planning strategy in response to changing will ensure a stable and sustainable trend to safeguard the interest of the society with sustainable environment is need of the today’s planner.07 Violation in % 15.80 2.82 3. which exposed the weakness in the enforcement system.33 Road Width Violation Landuse Violation FSI Violation Setback Violation 20.63 10.38 91.38 34.46 20. Planning is a continuous process.

83 Violation in % 20.27 5. Subash chandira / ITPI Journal 4 : 1 (2007) 37 .19 5.63 Road Width Violation Landuse Violation FSI Violation Setback Violation 37.M.63 53.70 Road Width Violation Landuse Violation FSI Violation Setback Violation 11.45 41 .65 1.84 1.30 36. Commercial Total Violation in % 65.56 15.20 Violation in % 13.62 42.92 2.86 Residential.37 Table 4 Types of Violations in CMA Institutional Areas Type of Violation Plot Violation Residential Commercial Others Nature of violations in institutional areas Violation in % 0.60 22.06 Violation in % 8.44 4. Commercial Total Violation in % 77.37 6.30 20.76 15.22 6.26 59.51 Residential.99 59.43 Table 3 Types of Violations in CMA in Industrial Buildings Type of Violation Plot Violation Residential Commercial Others Nature of Violations in Industrial Buildings Violation in % 20.77 70.79 Violation in % 23.74 60.56 7.09 14.28 4.55 2.68 0.

Ms.1 Section-56 Of Tamilnadu Town And Country Planning Act 1971 AMENDMENTS TO VARIOUS ACTS FOR EFFECTIVE ENFORCEMENT this Act in the eyes of the builder as well as the courts.P. 3. 1996 by exercising their powers under Section 49 of the Electricity (Supply) Act 1948 (Central Act 54 of 1948). 3. Subash chandira / ITPI Journal 4 : 1 (2007) 37 . the authorized Authority shall not supply water to the building or premises unless a certificate is produced to the effect that the building or premises is completed according to the plan approved by appropriate Authority under Town and Country Planning Act. 1978 Existing Section 56(4)(a) In future it is necessary to deny water supply and sewer connection to buildings. which are completed in deviation of approved plan are unauthorized. exempt any land or building or class of land or buildings from all or any of the provisions of this Act or rules or regulations made there under”.3 Existing provision Deletion of Section-113 Not withstanding anything contained.IEMC/ EEI/F. 3.08 of TNEB Rules Part . Section 56(A) shall be inserted after Section 56 to read as follows: Introduction of Section 57 (3) “Where in contravention of notice served under Section-57 (1) any further construction is undertaken such construction shall be removed without any further notice”. sell it to third parties and quit the scene. by notification. The Board has got power to stipulate special terms and conditions for extending supply. The fact that the Government reserves the power to relax any rule or provision under the Act has contributed a great deal in diluting the sanctity of 42 The terms and conditions of supply of electricity was issued by TNEB in a Notification in Tamil Nadu Government Gazette in Part VI .Section 3(b) TNEB terms and conditions of supply of Electricity (Approved: B.5 Proposed Amendment in TNEB Rules Relating to Terms and Conditions “Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act.M.2 Section-57 of Town and Country Planning Act 1971 Notwithstanding anything contained.6.Section-3 (b).43 3 The existing provisions under the Act are such that they allow enough loopholes for anyone to complete an unauthorized structure.302/96).TDC/D. the authorized Authority shall not effect sewer connection to the building or premises unless a certificate is produced to the effect that the building or premises is completed according to the plan approved by appropriate Authority under Town and Country Planning Act. Section-45 (A) shall be inserted after Section 45 to read as follows “The notice shall not be of any effect pending the final determination or withdrawal of the applicant”.61 (Administrative Branch) dated 24th December 1988 and amended up to 31st August 1995). In S. subject to such conditions as they deem fit.No. No effective enforcement of the Act is possible unless this provision is deleted. Section-85 Introduction of Section-85 (3) “The unauthorized reconstruction of the building wholly or partly removed under Section 56(5) (b) or Section 57(3) or 85(2)(a) shall be punishable with simple imprisonment for a term not less than 1 month and not exceeding 3 months”. TNEB – Abstract (No. the Government may.No. Proposed Section 56(4) (a) “On receipt of application under Section-49 the concerned Authority may stay the operation of the notice for such time as is deemed reasonable”. It is therefore proposed to delete Section-113. dated February 21. 3. Following amendments to Town and Country Planning Act are meant to strengthen the hands of CMDA and Local Bodies to enforce the Act effectively. 3.4 Proposed Amendment in Chennai Metro Water Supply and Sewerage Act. So we may .

Even the government may consider bringing all these departments under one umbrella for better administration. Applicants requiring power service connections to any building within CMDA area should produce completion certificate from the appropriate authority under Town and Country Planning Act/Local Body Act failing which power supply shall not be given by Tamil Nadu Electricity Board. Municipal corporations. to give power connection. Planning Tejendra Khanna committee report CMDA Regularization data Call for Papers and News Items The Editor requests members to send articles for inclusion in the Journal and Newsletter. labeled and sent as soft as well as hard copy. REFERENCES National building code • 4 As suggested above all the departments such as EB Metro Water. Registration department. CONCLUSIONS Authorities. Perpetual offenders for profit motive have to be booked under economic offence for severe punishment. During the course of construction. • TNEB can accept the application and deposit therefore and proceed with the work with proviso that energy use shall be affected only on production of Completion Certificate. Metro Water. Denial of services by EB.43 request the TNEB to impose the following terms and conditions. if deviation to the approved plan is detected the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board at the specific request of the appropriate Authority shall disconnect the temporary power connection. Last but not the least political interference in the enforcement of the laws of the land needs to be stopped.M. Items for the Newsletter can also be e-mailed to : Diagrams and sketches should be neatly drawn. Articles for the Journal may be sent as a soft copy (MS Word) as well as hard copy. for unauthorized buildings and plots will send a strong message to the violators to discipline themselves. in the interest of sustained development in the urban centers have to amend their acts and act together in a well co-ordinated manner in the interest of the city development.vsnl. Editor 43 . Subash chandira / ITPI Journal 4 : 1 (2007) 37 . Financial agencies also need proper screening system for clearing the loans and insist for completion certificate of the planning agencies. with due amendment to its Act deny the registration for unauthorized building / Chairpersons and Secretaries of the various Regional Chapters and Committees of the Institute are particularly requested to send highlights of their activities for the Newsletter and articles for the Journal on a regular basis. Special and Multistoried Buildings in terms and conditions of supply of electricity. TNEB is also requested to introduce definition of Ordinary.