The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC), on September 28, 2016, set up a committee to enact a law to deal with the city’s old and dilapidated houses that pose danger to people. The panel, headed by the state law commission chairman, justice Pranab Kumar Chattopadhyay, will submit its report within a month, mayor Sobhan Chatterjee said.
There are around 3,000 old and dilapidated houses in the city, mostly in north Kolkata that often collapse, causing injury to people and even death, KMC officials said. According to the existing laws, the KMC can only paste a notice that a house is dangerous to live in but cannot force its occupants to leave.
Sometimes, the occupants of such houses move the courts, the officials said, adding that the owners of such properties are generally not eager to undertake repairs, as they earn very low rents from the tenants. The new law will be enacted, keeping in mind all these aspects, the mayor said.
Additional chief secretary, secretary of department of law, director general of West Bengal fire services, the commissioner of Kolkata police and others, will be members of the committee.
After it is enacted, the law will be applicable everywhere in the state, urban development minister Firhad Hakim said.